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A Million Miles in a Thousand Years (Book Review)

Updated on November 26, 2012
Book Cover
Book Cover
5 stars for A Million Miles in a Thousand Years by Donald Miller

In Donald Miller's A Million Miles in a Thousand Years: What I Learned While Editing My Life the author takes the topic of how to live a meaningful life. Miller wrote a popular autobiographical book called Blue Like Jazz a number of years ago and was approached by a producer to turn the book into a fictionalized movie based on the book. In the process of editing and writing the screenplay Miller is challenged to understand what makes a good story that people will enjoy and understands the leap that, which he wrote a good book, he wasn't telling or living a good story.

Miller, takes on the effort to understand the components of storytelling and explains how they apply to living a life that is a good story rather than just telling a good story. He recognizes his life is his story, and although a successfully author and speaker, his life isn't compelling; he is wasting his time on trivial things like making up stories rather than living an extraordinary story.

Upon the realization that he needs to make his life extraordinary he leads us into how he changed his own story to make it better. From a grueling trip to Machu Picho to impress a girl, to a cross country bicycle trip, and finally the eclectic cast of real world characters that he begins to surround himself with the story changes for the better and becomes an inspiration to live a different story.

At the heart of Miller's wisdom is living takes action not desire. Our happiness takes action not desire. He spent his life drifting, like many do, wishing for a better story and inventing a better story in his head and writing them for others to ready but he didn't really understand what it is was to live. If we want to have of life of meaning we need to live and take responsibility for our life—we can't expect others to fill a void.

This is a book about Christian spirituality but it isn't preachy. Miller takes on the topics with Christian views of God but recognizes the flaws of man and our free will within God's plan. I wouldn't consider this a traditional self-help book but rather an autobiographical story that explains how the author found meaning and improved his life. For me it was an inspiration to try to live a more meaningful life.


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    • B. Leekley profile image

      Brian Leekley 5 years ago from Kalamazoo, Michigan, USA

      Sounds like an interesting book. Thanks for reviewing it.