It’s been four years since Carrie Fisher has passed away. Isn’t it unreal how time passes? I remember hearing the news and feeling a sense of shock. I never met Carrie in real life, although she had a way of making you feel like she would have been your best friend. She cared about Star Wars fans while being a champion for mental illness. I finally read her memoir The Princess Diarist along with another female-centered book and I wanted to combine them into one post.
The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
This is the book most well known for discussing Carrie’s intimate relationship with Harrison Ford. This memoir is so much more than discussing an on-set relationship. Carrie talks about her audition for the part. Interestingly enough, Carrie auditioned for both George Lucas and Brian DePalma who was looking for the leading part in his Stephen King adaptation to Carrie. Carrie discusses how she was supposed to lose weight for her role as Princess Leia and how the role impacted her as she aged.
Carrie walks a fine line while discussing her relationship with Harrison. The description is delicate. She’s able to discuss her relationship with him without revealing everything especially since Harrison himself is extremely private. The way she describes their interactions sounds like Harrison. She also states, “How I’ve portrayed Harrison is how Harrison was with me forty years ago.” She’s able to tell this story without the bullshit and also recognizes how Harrison isn’t necessarily the same person while he was with Carrie. I think this line shows the tact and professionalism Carrie exhibits when she wrote this memoir.
Another part of the memoir I enjoyed was how Carrie discussed her fame from the saga. Carrie details some of the offensive interactions with fans as they talk about how Carrie’s body changed and how she aged since her role. Carrie respects the fans along with herself and how she won’t put up with that behavior. She talks about how exhausting it was to sign autographs while not making a huge profit off of it either. As fans, we need to respect the actors who work on the series and how they are people, just like us.
Carrie Fisher was a national treasure. She will be missed forever. I would recommend this memoir if you’re a Star Wars fan and simply miss Carrie’s presence in the fandom. I rated The Princess Diarist four stars on Goodreads.
The Athena Protocol by Shamim Sarif
The Athena Protocol is a sapphic, young adult spy adventure novel. The Athena Protocol follows an organization titled Athena which is an all female based spy organization. They work outside their global governments to deliver justice and deconstruct corruption in various countries. The agents are well trained to handle the challenging environments they’re thrown into.
The Athena Protocol follows Jessie Archer as she’s on a mission in an African village. Her mission is to rescue women who have been kidnapped. She witnesses violence against these women and ultimately kills the man responsible. Athena has one rule, no killing. Jessie is fired and left out of a major operation happening in Belgrade. Jessie decides to work alone and flies to Belgrade to assist her team without their knowledge. Stakes are at an all-time high as Jessie uncovers new information which may jeopardize the safety of her fellow agents. Jessie is in danger and she’s alone.
One series I read a lot when I was younger was the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz starring Alex Rider, a young kid working for MI6. The Athena Protocol is this series, however, women are leading the front. Each Athena agent is given some back story. Jessie was recruited to this organization by her mother. Caitlin is a Southern belle who went to war in Afghanistan. Hala was seeking asylum in the UK and was recruited by Jessie. There’s diversity amongst all the women in Athena. I’m all for including diversity with characters in media.
The action sequences were well written and made me anxious for the characters. Jessie is put into some intense situations at her young age. The last thirty pages were intense to read. It’s surprising to me because The Athena Protocol is only 295 pages. It’s difficult to combine all the action, character development, and descriptions of the Athena group and have it all work together. Shamim Sarif, the author of The Athena Protocol is incredibly skilled at creating this world.
I cannot say enough good things about this book. According to Goodreads, I finished this book within two days of starting it. The second book to the series is out now and I’m going to ensure I order it on my next book haul. I rated The Athena Protocol five stars on Goodreads.
I hit my 2020 reading goal on Goodreads today! I still have a couple of books I want to finish before the end of the year. As always, feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments section below.