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The Image Seeker

(Bold Women of the 20th Century #2)

4.44  ·  Rating details ·  498 ratings  ·  58 reviews
The Dust Bowl 1936-Battered and near death, Billie Bassett gazes up at the stars from the door of a boxcar wondering if she can go on. Yet, in spite of the violence and privation riding the rails, she endures and becomes one of the finest photojournalists in the nation.
From humble beginnings in an Indian boarding school in Minnesota to high society in New York City, Billie
ebook, 328 pages
Published June 5th 2019 by Amazon Digital Service
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Average rating 4.44  · 
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Nancy Wilkinson
Jan 26, 2020 rated it really liked it
While I found the beginning of this book to be a bit stiff, I think because in places there was just a lot of narration and not as much dialogue, the rest of the book more than made up for that. While I have read a lot of WWII novels, I had never encountered the Berlin Olympics before and this added a great exclamation to the story. But the crux of the story was riding the rails and this was fabulous. I have never read a book about hobos, and this was fascinating. The native American connection ...more
Feb 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Amanda Hughes has written a story of an Indian child living on a reservation in Minnesota who follows her dream of photography to become a successful photojournalist with the New York Times! She wrote a book about the hard times during the depression, including the danger and excitement of riding the rails, romance, espionage, returning to her roots to perfect the use of Code Talking using her childhood language, covering the 1936 Olympics and escaping Nazi Germany. This was such a good read.
Dorothy Wiley
Jul 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
In a nutshell, this was one of the best books I've ever read. It is a slice of life, and a thick slice at that, that opened my eyes to a fascinating period of American and international history. After a long and difficult journey, the main character becomes one of America's first female photojournalists. Successfully competing in a man's world, and highly creative, she is finally recognized as being among the finest news photographers in the nation. The setting is one of our country’s most tragi ...more
May 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love historical novels that enlighten me to things I hadn't heard about, or about which I knew very little. In this case, I learned about separating Native American children from their family and reservations to force them to become more Americanized on many levels. I learned about hobos riding the rails during the Depression era. I learned a little bit more about how intelligence information was relayed during WWII (not saying more than that to avoid a spoiler problem). And so, I really enjoy ...more
Jun 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Image Maker

There are so many good things to be said about Amanda Hughes and her books about strong women. Billie, The Image Maker, is but one such story. I believe every woman should read these books. All I can say is “Wonderful Ms Hughes, thank you!”.
Stanley McShane
Billie Bassett is separated from her family and reservation in Minnesota at age 5 and sent to an Indian boarding school. Not allowed to speak her native language, she is fed, sheltered, and educated--until a tragic occurrence forces her decision to escape. She is lucky in that during several summers as she got older she was welcomed into a German farm family exchanging domestic help for another kind of education. And something else--love and support. It is through the encouragement and generosit ...more
Amanda Lauer
Mar 10, 2020 rated it it was amazing
This book had me captivated from page 1. It was such an interesting story, and even though it's fiction, the things that Billie went through as an American Indian child living through the Depression and as a young adult being part of the war effort during WWII, were things real people did experience during those time periods. It wasn't an easy life and there were many harrowing experiences but in the end Billie created the life of which she always dreamed. As an author, I love reading about stro ...more
Mar 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book. I know it says it is book 3, however, I have never read any of the other ones and found it stood alone without any problem. The book follows a Native American girl throughout her life in the 1920's and beyond. She grows up in a residential school and later goes on to lead a very exciting, albeit harrowing life through WW2.

Without giving away any spoilers, let me just say it brought to light aspects of life that I had never thought about and talked about the Native Am
Apr 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This was one of the best books I have read in awhile. It took place during The Great Depression with vivid accounts of the poverty and desperation of the people. Although they suffered with unemployment and extreme hunger, what this book captured was the unassuming strength and fortitude of the American people. They did what they had to do to survive.
Amanda Hughes writes about people living on the fringes of society in lesser known periods of history. I am looking forward to reading more books w
Maureen Hetzel
I read to the finish but with the increasing realization that the book was an amalgam of events that may have happened to women during the period covered. But it just seems improbable that it all happened to one woman. The writing was very straightforward. The characters seemed like stereotypes. I appreciate when author’s intent to portray stein women who overcame obstacle. But a more realistic approach would have been more believable.
Mar 01, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was a fascinating story. I love how it had characters and themes that are not usually written about. The idea of a Native American woman achieving these things was wonderful--although I don't know how realistic it could have been, sadly. But I love how the author brought the people and times to life.
Apr 28, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I rounded this up to a 3. It is an interesting story but kind of fluffy as to approach. Lots of history but probably too much crammed into one story. Hard to believe all of this could be a part of one persons life. It was an easy read though. I learned a few things. I prefer a book where it is more in depth and covering a historical event rather than so many.
Jun 07, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
What a disappointment. The historical elements, setting, and plot twists COULD HAVE been inspirational. Unfortunately, the sophomoric sentence structure, rushed transitions, grammatical errors ("guten morgan" - seriously?!), immature romance scenes (I literally rolled my eyes) and corny ending ruined grand possibilities.
Susan Zehnder
Jan 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Loved this book, in depth character development. Learned some facts about native american indians I had previously not known, did some further research in that area. I don't think I have ever read an Amanda Hughes book that I didn't love.
Mar 03, 2020 rated it really liked it
I liked the book, but -I thought it so sad that Billie never reconnected with her native american side, and just became the typical american, when her tribe probably had so much more to offer than the little peak we had in the book.
Robert Ruesch
Apr 26, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What I loved about this book was the author's willingness to clarify the background of the characters on revealing their past. You learned about the individuals and felt you were part of their adventure, their story.
The plot, storyline, is well thought out and excellent. Amanda Hughes digs deep into history to reveal a challenging time in the history of the word and the circumstances for the characters.
This book kept me reading well into the night!
Kathleen Lifka
May 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Excellent story of early 1900's struggles

Well written story of Billie Bassett, an Indian photographer. Ms Hughes creates believable characters along with realistic events of Billie's life.
Jan 22, 2020 marked it as to-read
Shelves: 00-own-a-copy
Free on Kindle
Pat Saley
Mar 30, 2020 rated it really liked it
I'd give this a 4.5 if I could. Very interesting with hobos riding the rails, discrimination of all sorts (Indians, Jews, etc.) & codebreakers' role in wars. Very interesting read. ...more
I loved it!
Jo Pelletier
May 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was a great read. Her friendships with the railroad travellers kept her going and made her strong and courageous. Glad I read this one. 💜
Lynne Parker
This is well-written and very easy to read. There is some great history included. I especially like the part about the Mohawk skywalkers since I had just finished reading a book about them.
Sher Brown
Good read

This wasn't the best writing but the characters were enough to keep me reading. I'm not sure if some of the history, but I am interested enough to research it. I would definitely read another book by this author.
Feb 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

There were times it was slow and mundane. Just facts and no emotional connection.
But other times it was very interesting. The hard times of Indians in the early 1900s and prejudice. The desperation of people looking for food and work because of the depression. Then using the Indians in the war.
It was an interesting read.
Larry Bryan
Feb 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Historical novel of riding the rails.

I liked the plot. I liked the interaction of characters. I liked the portrayal of the depression. I liked the description of characters feelings for each other.
Sherralynne Smith
Amazing story

This story is a very well written. I learned a great deal about the American depression and the roles that women played during World War Two. A story full of twists and turns, I highly recommend this story,
Toni Mari
Feb 23, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
New insights

This story explored new and fascinating aspects of a historical time we are familiar with. It was an interesting and fun read.
Carol Hatch
Not my favorite

Historical fiction is my favorite genre, and I so wanted to like this novel more than I did. I really disliked the first third of the book and nearly stopped reading it several times. Once Billie arrived in New York, I found her story less tedious and I began to feel more engaged. I understand the importance of Billie’s early life to the storyline, but I wish Ms. Hughes had spent less time on Billie’s years on the rails and more time at the end of the story. The ending was much to
Dean McIntyre
Feb 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
THE IMAGE SEEKER by Amanda Hughes is one of a series of her Bold Women of the 20th Century series, and it is a winner. Billie Bassett is an American Indian girl forced to attend state school to erase her culture, language, and identity. She works on a German immigrant's farm during the summer months and there begins to learn photography through personal experience. Back at school, during a fire, she escapes and joins up with a group of hobos riding the rails. It's a tough life and she tries to m ...more
C. Mills
Feb 15, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A Chippewa woman and a Jewish man dare Nazi Germany

A story of very hard times made harder by racial or religious prejudice, it's made suspenseful by narrow escapes, seeming friends who are actually German agent, and actual friends lost --at least for a while -- during the very difficult times of Depression and war. A worthwhile read.
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