Jonathan Livingston Seagull – Book Review

If you want to find your true north; then this book is for you. Jonathan Livingston Seagull is a novella of a young seagull who is oust from the society, in pursuit of flying high. He believed in pursuing his dreams and out of all the odds he makes it happen. Truly an inspiring fable written by Richard Bach from his own experiences and experiments with life trying to find his inner voice from deep within.

The story begins with a seagull named Jonathan who is in pursuit of flying high, better than any other seagull has ever done. He did not believe in just flying to find food, fighting or screeching like the normal gull. When he was on the verge of getting oust from the society he tries to remain calm and enjoy the normal life of finding food and screeching against each other. Finally one day he finds no meaning in the mundane life of an average seagull and ventures out to perfect his flying skills and tactics.

Most gulls don’t bother to learn more than the simplest facts of flight—how to get from shore to food and back again.  For most gulls, it is not flying that matters, but eating.  For this gull, though, it was not eating that mattered, but flight.  More than anything else, Jonathan Livingston Seagull loved to fly….  This kind of thinking, he found, is not the way to make one’s self popular with other birds.”


One day after he breaks his own flying records, he comes back and narrates the story to his fellows about the divine freedom he has experienced in search for the purpose of life. He was finally expelled from the society where the normal ignorant gulls found him to be a rebel and unconventional.

Jonathan flies into exile where he meets gulls with similar experiences, passion and learnings. They take him home with them where he learns and perfects the art of flying. As time moves, he finds followers and students who wants to learn from him. He finds new meaning to life in teaching the skills which he has mastered over a period of time.

From time to time he thinks of his fellows who has been living in ignorance without realizing the true meaning of Life. He assumed that there may be few a like him in his old flock and finally one day he decides to go back and teach his old flocks the new trick that he has learned. The curious but the average gull flocks to him and witnesses his ability to fly higher and teach. His students understand that beyond skills it requires unlimited understanding of freedom, which allows one to express their true self.

There is a Jonathan Livingston Seagull in each one of us, who is in pursuit of freedom to identify ones true self. This book makes a simple but great read in understanding oneself.

 PS: Thanks to a good man who has gifted me this book.