Why Fish Don’t Exist by Lulu Miller

You ever choose a book and later wonder what drew you to the book mainly because what you thought you were about to read is NOTHING like what you read?

Or is that just me?

Author Lulu Miller is a NPR Reporter who while dealing with her own struggles, becomes fascinated with David Starr Jordan, who among other things was Stanford University’s first president and along with his students, identified over 2500 fish species.
If that doesn’t capture your attention… he may have also been a murderer.

Yes, there is something for everyone here.

If you know what I usually read, you may wonder what drew me to this book. I believe initially I was fascinated with this person and thought it was going to be more about life lessons and I would come out with some small take-a-way. And honestly, maybe I did. The book is a little less than 4 hours on audio and by listening to it I may not have experienced it as fully as I could have while bustling around my home or in the car – but I did have one small aha moment.

There is a point in the book where Lulu Miller discusses that back in the day, people were encouraged to live in full reality. They were told it was not healthy to believe beyond your limitations or in other words dilute yourself. As time went on, it was found that the people who did live by this were far less happier people, often depressed. Where those who lived a little on the edge of fantasy, perhaps believed a little more in themselves then they should, over inflated their abilities, strengths, etc… were overall happier and healthier people. This was a game changer.

I really liked that part of the book because that is something I firmly believe in. If you constantly feel that this is the box you live in – with 4 walls and a floor and a ceiling and there is no room to move, grow, imagine, dream… well…. that is not for me.

Admittedly, that is probably not the best take away for this book. I know for a fact someone could read or listen to this book and take away far more fascinating things about David’s life, discoveries and intrigue that surrounded his days. I honestly am not sure how I feel about it as to properly do this, I feel I would need to listen to it or read it again and I do not feel I am that invested.

See reviews on Good Reads, there are a lot of people that loved this book and had huge responses to it. My timing simply was off.

8 thoughts on “Why Fish Don’t Exist by Lulu Miller

  1. I am curious…but not enough to read it, probably. But I can see why you might be intrigued by parts of it. Maybe it is a book to read rather than listen to? Thanks for sharing.

  2. I’m not sure this book is for me, but I do love the idea that those who live a bit beyond the reality or their “station” in life do better and are happier.

Hmmmm... what do you think?

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