She took exquisite photographs, but her heart was the true image exposed.
Fifteen-year-old Jessie Ann Gaebele loves nothing more than capturing a gorgeous Minnesota landscape when the sunlight casts its most mesmerizing shadows. So when F.J. Bauer hires her in 1907 to assist in his studio and darkroom, her dreams for a career in photography appear to find root in reality.
With the infamous hazards of the explosive powder used for lighting and the toxic darkroom chemicals, photography is considered a man’s profession. Yet Jessie shows remarkable talent in both the artistry and business of running a studio. She proves less skillful, however, at managing her growing attraction to the very married Mr. Bauer.
This luminous coming-of-age tale deftly exposes the intricate shadows that play across every dream worth pursuing–and the irresistible light that beckons the dreamer on.
Based on the author’s grandmother’s life as a turn of the century photographer in Winona, Minnesota. This coming of age series of two books captures the interplay between temptation and faith that marks a woman’s pursuit of her dreams. Actual historical photos from the collection of Jessie Ann Gaebele are included.
- Best Book (top 10) List, 2009, Library Journal
- Winner, 2010, WILLA Literary Award, Original Softcover Fiction (Trade or Mass Market), Women Writing the West
- Finalist, 2010, Christy Award, Evangelical Christian Publishers Association
- Finalist, 2011, Oregon Book Award, Portland Literary Arts Organization
Other books in this series: An Absence So Great
“…exceptionally authentic…exquisite nuance…compelling portrait…aching and hopeful…,”—Publishers Weekly **Starred Review**
“… Jessie Ann Gaebele is talented and shows great promise; however, she begins to dream of more than photographs when she falls for her married boss. Inspired by the life of the author’s grandmother, this is a beautifully told story of temptation and God’s redeeming grace. Highly recommended for CF and historical fiction collections.”—School Library Journal **Starred Review**
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