Friday 56 & Book Beginnings: Eight Girls Taking Pictures

Eight Girls Taking Pictures by Whitney Otto

The kitchen smelled like burnt wood and water. Cymbeline closed her eyes and imagined that she and Leroy were breaking camp on a cool morning in the Olympics, the carried river water flooding the remains of the breakfast fire before they set out for a day of photography and painting, and sometimes simply lying back in the sweetness of the grass, doing nothing.
- p.  3 (ARC, page may change)

For Friday 56:
"Clifton!" called the second man, who seemed relieved to have run into a familiar face "what the devil are you doing here?"

"Being punished," the young man answered. While he didn't raise his voice for all to hear, he didn't take pains to lower it either. "This place is like death."
- p. 56 (ARC, page may change)

I'm kind of excited for this because I loved the movie How to Make an American Quilt. (Probably because I really liked Winona Ryder at the time). I haven't read the book yet though!

I'm a little behind with my reading and the good books are piling up! I guess I'll have more time what with the weather cooling down (I am secretly hoping that the warm weather will hold up a little longer...)

Happy Friday everyone!
Synopis: Bestselling author Whitney Otto’s Eight Girls Taking Pictures is a profoundly moving portrayal of the lives of women, imagining the thoughts and circumstances that produced eight famous female photographers of the twentieth century.  
This captivating novel opens in 1917 as Cymbeline Kelley surveys the charred remains of her photography studio, destroyed in a fire started by a woman hired to help take care of the house while Cymbeline pursued her photography career. This tension— between wanting and needing to be two places at once; between domestic duty and ambition; between public and private life; between what’s seen and what’s hidden from view—echoes in the stories of the other seven women in the book.  
Among them: Amadora Allesbury, who creates a world of color and whimsy in an attempt to recapture the joy lost to WWI; Clara Argento, who finds her voice working alongside socialist revolutionaries in Mexico; Lenny Van Pelt, a gorgeous model who feels more comfortable photographing the deserted towns of the French countryside after WWII than she does at a couture fashion shoot; and Miri Marx, who has traveled the world taking pictures, but also loves her quiet life as a wife and mother in her New York apartment.  
Crisscrossing the world and a century, Eight Girls Taking Pictures is an affecting meditation on the conflicts women face and the choices they make. These memorable characters seek extraordinary lives through their work, yet they also find meaning and reward in the ordinary tasks of motherhood, marriage, and domesticity. Most of all, this novel is a vivid portrait of women in love—in love with men, other women, children, their careers, beauty, and freedom.


  1. This sounds like a book I'd love. The basic premise appeals to me: the lives of women photographers. I'll read this one.
    Here's my Beginnings / Friday 56 post.

  2. Interesting book! Interesting beginning and 56! Sometimes we have to use our imagination to escape harsh reality!

  3. I can't get over the cover art and font, just beautiful! Have a wonderful weekend!

    1. gotta agree, ladyd. i havent started this yet but going through to get the snippets, i have a feeling this is a special read


© guiltless readingMaira Gall