Why Fish Don’t Exist: A Story of Loss, Love, and the Hidden Order of Life

Written by Lulu Miller
Why Fish Dont Exist

A wondrous debut from an extraordinary new voice, Why Fish Don’t Exist is an astonishing tale of love, chaos, scientific obsession, and—possibly—even murder.

In this blend of history and memoir, NPR reporter Lulu Miller tells the saga of scientist David Starr Jordan, the taxonomist responsible for discovering nearly a fifth of the fish known to humankind. When the 1906 San Francisco earthquake destroyed his life's work, Jordan began an extraordinary journey of repair. In his story, Miller finds a fable about perseverance amid chaos, one with ramifications for her own understanding of history, morality, and the world beneath her feet.

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Lulu Miller

Lulu Miller is a Peabody Award-winning science journalist. She is the co-founder of NPR's Invisibilia and a frequent contributor to Radiolab. Her first book, Why Fish Don't Exist, is an exploration of the dangers of our thirst for order.