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Publisher's Summary

In Wishful Drinking, Carrie Fisher tells the true and intoxicating story of her life with inimitable wit. Born to celebrity parents, she was picked to play a princess in a little movie called Star Wars when only 19 years old. "But it isn't all sweetness and light sabers."

Alas, aside from a demanding career and her role as a single mother (not to mention the hyperspace hairdo), Carrie also spends her free time battling addiction, weathering the wild ride of manic depression and lounging around various mental institutions. It's an incredible tale - from having Elizabeth Taylor as a stepmother, to marrying (and divorcing) Paul Simon, from having the father of her daughter leave her for a man, to ultimately waking up one morning and finding a friend dead beside her in bed.

©2008 Delinquence, Inc.; (P)2008 Simon & Schuster, Inc

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Wishful Grieving

A couple of weeks ago, I thought it would be fun to listen to "Wishful Drinking" (2008) to get ready for Carrie Fisher's newest, "The Princess Diarist" (November 22, 2016). Before Audible, I'd read "Wishful Drinking" on paper. I thought it was mildly amusing but not terribly insightful or even memorable, a 3 or 3.5 out of 5.

"Wishful Drinking" as a listen is brilliant, laugh out loud funny, and - especially for those in the 18% - a bookmark-that-clip "at last someone isn't afraid to say it" picture of an intriguing life with mental illness. It is so good it was nominated for a Grammy for Spoken Word in 2009, losing to former Vice President Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" - and to be fair, global warming affects the 100%.

What's the 18%? According to the National Institute for Mental Health of the National Institutes of Health, that's the percentage of American adults who, in any given year, are living with a mental illness. (Retrieved from nimh dot nih dot gov on December 27, 2016).

I personally hate the term "suffering from" - does anyone say they are "suffering from" diabetes? a heart condition?" I don't think Fisher ever used it. She lived with manic Roy and sobbing Pam, the names she gave to the two wildly divergent sides of her bipolar disorder. Fisher's bipolar disorder went undiagnosed for long enough to give her blackout drinking and overdose drug problems when she self-medicated. Shock treatment helped eventually, but it robbed her of some memories - but thankfully, not her sense of humor.

Here are some great quotes from the book: "Resentment is like drinking poison and waiting for the other person to die." And "I like to quote fictional characters because I'm somewhat of a fictional character myself."

I really liked hearing Fisher narrate, and I got such a kick out of the times that she couldn't help but laugh at herself. I was so looking forward to listening to "The Princess Diarist." I'd planned something special: I was going to wait until Fisher was on her book tour in Los Angeles so I could get a signed hardback - and then buy the Audible and listen to it , book in hand. I was hoping for an appearance at the 2017 Los Angeles Times Festival of Books.

I was crushed when Fisher died on December 27, 2016. Her mother, the charming actress Debbie Reynolds, followed Fisher just a day later, on December 28. I imagine if there's an afterlife, Fisher's already busy at work on an amusing monologue about her mother dramatically upstaging her in death.

[If this review helped, please press YES. Thanks.]

105 of 117 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Another Perspective....

I'm a bit confused by the low-ratings other listeners have given this audiobook, as I found it to be a frequently hilarious, laugh-out-loud work marked by an enjoyably idiosyncratic performance by the author. My only complaint is that at just a hair over three hours, it left me wanting much more. I can only hope that in the near future we'll see the release of Wishful Drinking Strikes Back!

20 of 22 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

An entertaining, yet unfortunate story.

I decided to listen to this AudioBook because I have been a fan of Star Wars since I was a kid. I wanted to hear more about Carrie Fisher from her own words and hear her stories.

There are essentially two parts to the book. She talks about growing up in the entertainment industry, and how it's weirdness, along with the influences of those around her, famous or not, helped shape her life. She does briefly talk about Star Wars, and how George Lucus "ruined her life" but, in the nicest way possible. She also talks about her Mother (Debbie Reynolds) quite a bit as well.

The second part goes into great detail her struggle with Bipolar disorder, and also her struggles with drugs and alcohol. She mentions her electro-shock therapy as a means to help overcome this disorder, with the unfortunate side effect of losing a lot of her memory.

The tale she tells is very entertaining, as Carrie Fisher is a very witty individual. I never felt bored or wishing I was listening to something else during the audiobook. At first, I had wished for more stories about her experiences with Star Wars, but I do understand that it certainly wasn't the only part of her life and if anything made her life very stressfull.

The quality of the audio is well, though Carrie does have the tendancy to shout some of the end of her lines to try and add a bit of humor, which isn't all too necessary. Overall, I'd recommend this one and would listen to any future audiobooks by the author.

24 of 29 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Laugh out loud funny

This is not an autobiography; this is a memoir of sorts; just some funny bits from a life lived at full tilt. The humor and insight Ms. Fisher reveals regarding her struggles with addiction and bipolar disorder is marvelous. I thought it was great. She does not complain or wallow in self pity; she has reached the stage in her life that she can laugh at the hard bits; and shares that with us. I think that perhaps older folks (40+) might enjoy this book more than younger people.

I enjoyed her reading; I thought it really added to the book. I enjoyed hearing about Cary Grant and Paul Simon; would have liked to hear more, but I liked what I heard. She swears and has a different sense of humor, but that's what I liked about it.

This is not a book of her life; it is a book of scenes from a life. Apparently, it's based on a nightclub act she is doing; I would love to see it. I have recommended and purchased it for friends. I say give it a try.

15 of 18 people found this review helpful

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Crazy person in traffic

What did you love best about Wishful Drinking?

Carrie Fisher's humor was non stop - her self deprecating 1 liners had me in tears. I know people at the stop lights were looking at me wondering what was wrong with me.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Wishful Drinking?

When she was referring to Lucas owning the "rights" to the Princess Leia likeliness - and referred to her cosmic regions.

What does Carrie Fisher bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I love her voice.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

YES

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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A wonderful writer!

I can't understand the low ratings by some listeners.Carrie Fisher is an inspiration.She's a survivor who's laugh out loud funny.I couldn't stop listening to this audiobook.

7 of 9 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

A rambling pleasure

Listening to this book is like sitting down for a few drinks with Carrie Fisher and getting all the gossip. She doesn't spare any details, either - but nor does Carrie start at the beginning. The prose is like a stream of consciousness ramble, but it works well. Her random one-liners pop up where you least expect them. I would certainly recommend this book to prospective listeners.

10 of 14 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Witty, hilarious listen!

Just the most ironic, laugh-out-loud, authentic-sounding memoir I've read in a long time. The artist formerly known as Princess Leia lays out rolicking wit similar in flat, deadpan delivery to David Sedaris. Provided in a raspy, too-many-cigarettes voice, Carrie Fisher's narrative of her trip through lala land is a stunner.

A must listen!

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall

Over 40, lived life,you will like it

It took me a while to get used to her sense of humour, and I have to admit I started it once and gave up. But about half way through, I couldn't wait to get back in my car to listen to more. Her reading was rougth to the ears, like she had repeated so many times it was like from a script. But her frankness and honesty did manange to shine a light thought that. You can be a movie icon born from icons, and you still have a teenager, parents,xs that make us connect.

4 of 6 people found this review helpful

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Love Carrie's humor; Hate Carrie's new voice

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

No, i don't think so, even though i give away copies of the print version as gifts to particularly funny and savvy friends. Carrie's voice when she was younger (i.e., her Postcards From the Edge voice) was fine and flawless, her articulation crisp and clear. This sounds like a whole different person--one who has suffered a stroke, wears ill-fitting dentures, and/or has spent a lifetime of drinking while smoking. The voice is hoarse, harsh, grating, mildly dysarthric, and produced at such a slow rate that it kills the humor.

Would you recommend Wishful Drinking to your friends? Why or why not?

Only the print version, not the audiobook!

How could the performance have been better?

Carrie could have allowed someone else (e.g., someone younger, and a non-smoker/drinker, with a better voice....maybe her daughter Billie who she's always praising in the book?) to read it instead of reading it herself.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

It wouldnt work as a film, as the filmed version of her one-woman show doesnt work. The problem is her fifty-something delivery--it's slow and clunky, whereas her thirtysomething delivery was rapidfire and whip-smart.

Any additional comments?

Do yourself a favor and buy the print version!! It's literally laugh-out-loud funny; you'll find yourself reading parts of it out loud to your significant other, with both of you laughing so hard you'll barely be able to catch your breath long enough to read the next sentence! Carrie sure can write, and such a wit!

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

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  • Rebecca
  • 09-14-09

A life less serious

Well, Carrie Fisher has definitely lived life to the full, there is honestly not much that she hasn't done from the list of 100 weird things to do before you die. She narrates this slice of her life with wry humour (sounding a bit slurred in places but frankly I'm not suprised) and is all the more engaging for it. She is clearly one of life's survivors and has reached a stage where she can look back objectively and appraise the people around her and make sense of their impact without blaming them. Because of what she is like, and who she is, this book inludes descriptions of a life as a child of a very famous filmstar and a whole range of bizzare incidents that frankly you wouldn't believe if I wrote them down. This is a fascinating insight into a unique life and its only about 4 hours long, so an excellent choice if you want an humourous and entertaining listen or want to be reminded that actually, your life isn't nearly as bad or complicated as you think!.

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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  • Simon
  • 08-13-10

Funny and insightful

I was looking for something different from the fiction I had previously purchased and decided to go for a biography, and I was pleasently suprised. It's a very humorous insight in to the parentage, young life and personal issues of an actress who played one of the most memorable characters of the late 20th century.
Carrie's reading of this boook is fluid and personable, almost like she was talking to you! Highly recommended !

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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  • Mr B.Kirk
  • 12-29-13

Witty and well read

Any additional comments?

Listening to Carrie Fisher read this adds to the enjoyable experience, I can't see how the "pepper pot pepper pot" scenes would translate anywhere near as good without Carrie reading it out aloud, superb listen, I thoroughly enjoyed it - probably helped as im of a generation that grew up with Star Wars and, later on, of another crowd of people who can relate to Carrie's struggles.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Miss K.
  • 12-15-08

Highly Recommended

I loved this book. Carrie is brutally frank about her many problems, her narration of the book is great.

6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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  • Emma Maree
  • 06-20-16

Short, scattered electro shock therapy story

As much as I love Carrie Fisher, this isn't really a book (or in my case, an audiobook). It's a three hour transcript of her recent stand-up show, and as a book it's a bit if a mess. It's all other the place, repeating itself unawares, and filled with a dizzying amount of name-dropping, family trees, and vague references to interviews and scandals you need to Google to understand further.

It also evangelizes constantly about electro-shock therapy. It honestly doesn't stop. I understand it means a lot to her, but I wish it had been advertised as the ECT recovery memoir it is. The book says a lot about how amazing ECT is without addressing that it's a *last resort* when other therapy options have failed.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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  • jon de bolt
  • 01-21-17

Rollercoaster!!

I'm so glad that I chose this Autobiography of the late Carrie Fisher.
A life cut short, however, Carrie Fisher narrates her autobiography with wit and even manages to make her rollercoaster life story so engaging from the first sentence. I laughed so much; even she laughs as she reads. I highly recommend you buy this audiobook, and tell your friends to do the same. Moving, funny, very frank, and extremely revealing.
I've listened to this three times already. Superb!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Barrijean Walsh
  • 01-16-17

loved it

a bittersweet read. such a wonderful mind, she had. she unashamedly talks about mental illness in a very authentic way.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Damon Lodge
  • 11-01-15

Carrie Fisher's Wishful Drinking is a masterpiece.

A fantastic autobiography of one of my heroes brilliant! Her honest struggle with mental health, drugs and alcohol makes you realise what this wonderful woman has gone through. I also struggle with been a manic so just to hear her soothing voice just saying it will be okay, is comforting

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • I Grok Frak
  • 11-24-17

The Force was NOT with Her.

I had no expectations when I bought this book. Carrie Fisher had recently died.

This book in many ways makes me sad. I had always thought, for no good reason, that movie stars were "those" people. They become icons, if they are lucky, live rich and full fulling lives. And maybe that is all true. However, they are also just normal people who have normal problems. and this book touches on some of those thay Carrie had. A great listen told directly by her. At all times funny and sad.

Worth a listen!

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  • Tracey
  • 04-14-17

fabulous

great listen, a candid insight into her celebrity life, I'll definitely download her other books.

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  • Jacquie Jackman
  • 12-28-16

Hilarious, witty and blisteringly candid

Ah, Carrie, I'm writing this review knowing that this wonderful woman died yesterday. I read Wishful Drinking with eager anticipation when it was first published... BIG mistake. To truly enjoy the full colour and depth of this book you must purchase the audio version. Carrie's voice may not hold the youthful softness it once had, but none of her warmth, wit or loveliness has been lost. Her anecdotes are hilariously told and not once does she let you pity her many misfortunes. As she herself will tell you, she's had a good life- just a shame it ended all too soon. RIP Carrie, the world is a little greyer without you.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Mrs H V Young
  • 06-21-17

smiled, laughed and cried

Loved it from start to finish, but hearing Carrie read it makes me feel closer to her

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  • Anonymous User
  • 06-18-17

Honest and hilarious

Highly recommend this candid, fun and interesting story of Carrie Fishers live, loves and struggles.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 01-29-17

hilarious and sensitive

many moments I had to laugh out loud. it's honest, pure, funny and highly entertaining. her story about her depression is very insightful and has lots of clarity. would highly recommend it.

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  • Kate
  • 01-03-17

Strangled by my bra, bathed in moonlight

This is a terrific, funny book that I wish I'd read sooner. Vale Carrie Fisher.

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  • Kobie
  • 08-17-16

I love it

I honestly loved listening to it! Made me almost cry, yet I found myself laughing at Carrie.

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  • Lauren
  • 05-10-16

Interesting

What did you like best about Wishful Drinking? What did you like least?

Interesting insight into Carrie Fisher's life. Often felt like she was trying a little too hard to get a laugh. Some parts seemed a little rushed, others felt terribly dragged out.

If this book were a film would you go see it?

Probably not