The Princess Diarist
Writer: Carrie Fisher
Readers: Carrie Fisher and Billie Lourd
Review by Hafsa Alk
I was listening to the audiobook when I heard the news that Carrie Fisher won a Grammy for The Princess Diarist. Billie Lourd’s Instagram post about it gave me the idea to actually review the book and encourage everyone to read it as well.
The Princess Diarist is an amazing narrative that explores Fisher’s experience during the filming of the first Star Wars movie, Star Wars IV: A New Hope. The main topics are her innocence and perceived experience. However, she does talk about her childhood, her life post-Star Wars, and her experiences with fans. The side topics do address both the positive and negative sides, balancing her discomfort along with her appreciation for these experiences.
One of the major focuses of The Princess Diarist is the scandal that broke out about Fisher and Harrison Ford. She describes the experience retrospectively, with an awareness of her naïveté during that time. The introduction of her diaries at this point emphasizes her innocence and her confusion around the event. This part shows she was a willing participant in whatever experience she had, even though one could argue a case of dubious consent and power dynamics. However, present Fisher makes sure to stress that she was willing.
As an audiobook, the narrative is made that much more honest through hearing Fisher’s actual voice. You can feel that she is genuine in her speech. Lourd’s part lacks that because it felt like she was an unattached version of her mother’s younger self. Despite that, her part was crucial to the lyricism of the narrative. Furthermore, the narrative becomes more intimate with a younger voice expressing what a young woman is thinking.
Verdict: Buy it.
The Princess Diarist is worth reading, but I highly recommend listening to it. Fisher and Lourd’s dynamic reading gives the story a more intimate feel. Either way, the narrative gives an insight into who Fisher is in relation to Star Wars. Her inner thoughts shed away her ethereal status and present her as one badass woman.
Find The Princess Diarist here.