I just finished this book and enjoyed it from beginning to end. In addition to learing about Curtis and his work, the reader also learns a lot (much of it discomforting) about the American Indian as they were in that period. A striking takeaway from this book is how someone who contributed so much to the fields of photography and anthropology, who was known world-wide at the apex of his career, who sacrificed his family, home and a successful business in pursuit of his goal, could die penniless and in almost complete obscurity. A lesson to all with a singular passion.

Couple of things to note about this book. There is very little discussion about equipment and technique. Again, it's about the man and his singular vision. Each chapter concludes with a small selection of photographs relevant to that section of the book; those wanting a more complete visual survey of Curtis's work will need to look elsewhere.

As an aside, anyone with an interest in Curtis who is near or passing through the Seattle area may want to stop by the Flury & Company gallery on the corner of 1st and Jackson (Pioneer Square). Among other things, they specialize in Curtis's work. Besides gravures they also have a number of Curt-tones (gold tones, orotones) on display -- these are truly remarkable, and pictures don't fully convey the 3-dimensional nature of these works. (I have no affiliation with Flury & Company. I came across them while looking for some local Curtis work after reading the book.)