She’s a quicksilver girl
A lover of the world
She spreads her wings
And she’s free — Steve Miller, 1968
Reminiscent at times of the freewheeling milieu of Jack Kerouac’s On the Road, Julia Dreyer Brigden’s memoir, Girl, keeps you turning the pages. From time spent with her upper middle class and world-traveling family to her experiences growing up as a child in Sausalito and her precocious teenaged excursions deep into Mexico with a cast of misfits and travelers and then back to California, where she ties up with the rising lights of the psychedelic music scene, “Girl,” as she was known, steers her way through a variety of colorful and sometimes harrowing scenarios while passing through life along the Pacific Coast during a galvanizing time in modern history. Ride along as she brushes elbows with David Crosby, Joan Baez, Michael Bloomfield, members of the Grateful Dead; and marries musician David Freiberg of Quicksilver Messenger Service, Jefferson Airplane and Jefferson Starship renown. Dreyer Brigden demonstrates an admirable independence and a knack for engaging and intelligent observation as she chronicles what it was like to be a young woman in the midst of the often exciting, though not always enlightened, ’60s and beyond. The book examines the writer’s personal journey as a human being, including a temporary struggle with cocaine addition, while also exploring the intriguing characters and events of a life fully lived.