Saturday, July 13, 2019
My Girls: A Lifetime with Carrie and Debbie
by Todd Fisher
William Morrow, 2018. 388 pages. Nonfiction
Todd Fisher is the son of movie legend Debbie Reynolds and brother to Carrie Fisher, another movie legend in her own right. In this memoir of his own experiences with the women he calls, my girls, Fisher gives an honest, yet loving, portrayal of the over-the-top lives of his family.
With humor and heartbreak he outlines how he came into the world as his parents’ marriage was breaking up. This began the special and complicated relationship he had with his sister and mother. Debbie’s next two husbands both cheated and stole from her. Todd was there to stand with her through the heartache and the legal nightmares both divorces created. Meanwhile Carrie was dealing with major mood swings that would eventually be diagnosed as Bipolar Disorder. As Carrie began a successful acting and writing career and Debbie continued to perform and work in theater, Todd became fascinated with making movies and documentaries. Most of his life was taken up by the needs of his mother and sister. He was the only man in their life who they could trust to love and stand by them until their untimely deaths, one day apart, in 2016.
Fisher has penned a love story to the family that was demanding, but fiercely loyal to each other and honors his mother and sister as the amazing women and entertainers that they were. This book was funny and heartbreaking at the same time. Reynolds and her children had an amazing bond. Their loyalty was fierce and strong. Whenever Carrie overdosed or Debbie had financial trouble, Todd was there to help them pick up the pieces.
As a lover of both Debbie Reynolds and Carrie Fisher, this memoir was a fitting tribute to such amazing women. Yes, Reynolds was an alcoholic; yes, Carrie Fisher was an addict and had debilitating mental demons. But Todd Fisher shows their grit, their intelligence, and their never-ending humor.
If you are a fan of Carrie Fisher’s books like Shockaholic and The Princess Diarist, this book will be a great bookend to a brilliant career of writing. If you are a fan of Singing in the Rain and The Unsinkable Molly Brown, this is a loving account of Debbie Reynolds from her adoring son. I highly recommend it.