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The Best Awful: A Novelby Carrie Fisher
Synopses & Reviews
When we left Suzanne Vale at the end of Carrie Fisher's bestselling Postcards from the Edge, she had survived drug abuse, rehab, and Hollywood celebrity. The Best Awful takes Suzanne back to the edge with a new set of troubles — not the least of which is that her studio executive husband turned out to be gay and has left her for a man.
Lonely for a man herself, Suzanne decides that her medication is cramping her style, and she goes off her meds — with disastrous results. The "manic" side of the illness convinces her it would be a good idea to get a tattoo, cut off her hair, and head to Mexico with a burly ex-con and a stash of OxyContin. As she wakes up in Tijuana, the "depressive" side kicks in, leading Suzanne through a series of surreal psychotic episodes before landing her in a mental hospital. With the help of her movie star mom, a circle of friends, and even her ex-husband, she begins the long journey back to sanity.
Based on a truant's story, The Best Awful is by turns highly comic and darkly tragic, a roller-coaster ride through the dizzying highs and crushing lows of manic depression, yet containing all the fast and furious wit that made Postcards from the Edge both a bestselling novel and a hit movie.
"Pharmacological facts and scenes from group therapy are revealed with Fischer's trademark irony and nonstop wisecracks. Rather than hide the painful truths of mental disorders, her humor serves to highlight them." Publishers Weekly
"Ms. Fisher's most amusingly snarky book since Postcards From the Edge....
"Bravado, intelligence, wit and iffy medication. Suzanne Vale (or Carrie Fisher) uses every weapon in our fragile human arsenal to fight against the numb horror of madness." The Washington Post Book World
"Fisher's novels deserve their popularity. Her intelligence and humor — sometimes wicked, sometimes winningly self-deprecating — are matched by a no-nonsense quality." Los Angeles Times
"[T]he writing is punchy and warm, with abundant energy for humor....This skillful novel reveals the common ground in what seems to be a special case. The shocks and bolts of bipolar life are...not so very different from the fugal intensity of ordinary life." Times Literary Supplement (U.K.)
"The satirical swipes at Tinseltownare missing here....The rest is all Suzanne, and she's just not interesting enough to sustain the attention." Kirkus Reviews
"Despite the tawdry subject matter, wit and humor abound, making this novel recommended for all fiction collections." Library Journal
"Fisher's strengths lie in her witty dialogue and her lambasting of Hollywood at its most shallow, but her characters never quite gel like they should. Fans of Postcards...might enjoy this, but they also might be left wishing for more insight into Suzanne." Booklist
"The Best Awful is completely successful in describing one woman's journey into hell. Fisher's comic tone takes the edge off her grim subject matter, yet she is fearless in blowing society's lid off psychosis." The Oregonian (Portland, OR)
"Pick up The Best Awful and you'll be hard-pressed to put it down. Maybe it's the Hollywood gossip. Maybe it's the snappy dialogue. Maybe it's the run-on sentences." Minneapolis Star Tribune
"The story is a messy, humorous read — and will make your own life seem a lot less crazy....Though Fisher's zippy dialogue still takes center stage, she has definitely sharpened her descriptive skills." Rocky Mountain News
"Fisher dispenses snappy one-liners and pithy observations in her entertaining new novel with practiced aplomb....The Best Awful is at its best as Fisher recounts Suzanne's stay at Shady Lanes...which Suzanne will be the first to tell you is no Girl, Interrupted." Orlando Sentinel
"No-holds-barred humor and snappy banter." People
"Carrie Fisher [is] one of our most painfully hilarious correspondents from the edge of sanity." Vanity Fair
In this darkly funny sequel to the bestselling Postcards from the Edge, Carrie Fisher is back with the story of a woman on the verge of, in the middle of, and recovering from her descent into insanity. Wry, tender, and painfully entertaining, this is Fisher at her most candid and revealing best.
Inspired by Fisher's own emotional battles, The Best Awful relates the story of a woman who is on the verge of, in the depths of, and in recovery from a psychotic breakdown.
About the Author
Carrie Fisher is the author of the bestsellers Postcards from the Edge, Surrender the Pink, and Delusions of Grandma. She has a daughter, Billie. They want to see the aurora borealis.
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