When I read Blue Like Jazz, Don Miller’s first major book, I was absolutely blown away. It was an open, honest ramble through the life of an open, honest twenty-something author. Quite literally, it changed my life.
The opportunity to review A Million Miles in a Thousand Years, Don Miller’s most recent book, came with mixed feelings. The books he had written in between were nothing special. Somehow, Miller had lost his voice and judging by the sales figures from those books, no one was listening anyway.
All the same, when I received my copy of A Million Miles, I was expecting to be disappointed but hoping that I would be changed. How did the book stand up to my expectations and hopes?
It did ok.
A Million Miles in a Thousand Years is not Blue Like Jazz. The muses smiled on Miller when he wrote that one. All the same, it is just as open and honest as the previous book. The differences are found in Miller himself. Because he is a well-known author, he is much more traveled and distinguished than he was when he wrote Blue Like Jazz. In short, he has matured a lot, both as a writer and as a person.
The book follows Miller’s discovery of his story. In contrast to Blue Like Jazz which felt random and somewhat “Don-centered”, this book reverberates with a story marching toward a definite end. Of course, in good Don Miller style, he does not give us the end. We are left hanging at the end, but we are a lot more confident about where Don is going than we were at the end of Blue Like Jazz.
All in all, A Million Miles in a Thousand Years is a solid effort and a good read. It is not full of angst and struggle, but it does show us life as it is and as it should be. There’s really not much more you can say about it.