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Download Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample Short Nights of the Shadow Catcher: The Epic Life and Immortal Photographs of Edward Curtis, by Timothy Egan Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (675 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Timothy Egan Narrator: David Drummond Publisher: Dreamscape Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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At once an incredible adventure narrative and a penetrating biographical portrait, Egan’s book tells the remarkable untold story behind Edward Curtis’s iconic photographs, following him throughout American Indian territory from desert to rainforest as he struggled to document the stories and rituals of more than eighty tribes.

Even with the backing of Theodore Roosevelt and J. P. Morgan, his journeys took tremendous perseverance. The undertaking changed him profoundly, from detached observer to outraged advocate. He would die penniless and unknown in Hollywood just a few years after publishing the last of his twenty volumes. But the charming rogue with the grade-school education had fulfilled his promise—his great adventure succeeded in creating one of America’s most stunning cultural achievements.

Included is a pdf with samples of Edward Curtis’ striking works.

Download and start listening now!


Quotes & Awards

  • “A sweeping tale about two vanishing ways of life.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “A stirring and affectionate portrait of an underknown figure.”

    New York Times

  • “A riveting biography of an American original.”

    Boston Globe

  • “A fitting tribute to an American original who fought for a people with his camera and his art.”

    Los Angeles Times

  • “Egan is a muscular storyteller and his book is a rollicking page-turner with a colorfully drawn hero.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “[A] captivating tribute to a treasured American and the treasures he created.”

    Dallas Morning News

  • “A stunning portrait of Edward Curtis that captures every patina of his glory, brilliance, and pathos.”

    Christian Science Monitor

  • “Recaptures the story of a man both entrapped by his time and ahead of it.”


  • “With a reporter’s eye for detail, Egan delivers a gracefully written biography and adventure story.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “David Drummond offers an able reading that carries the material well, with no false emotion or histrionics..He imparts clear emotion on the subjects dear to Curtis himself, especially the treatment of the Nez Perce tribe of the Northwest. An accompanying PDF includes samples of Curtis’ striking works, and his entire multivolume work on American Indians is available online.”


  • A 2012 Publishers Weekly Best Book in Nonfiction
  • One of the 2012 New York Times Book Review 100 Notable Books for Nonfiction
  • Winner of the 2013 Chautauqua Prize
  • A New York Times Bestseller
  • A Barnes & Noble Recommends Selection
  • An Amazon Best Book of 2012

Listener Opinions

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Steven | 2/20/2014

    " An excellent read, chronicling the impassioned life and extraordinary work of Edward Curtis, who captured vanishing Native American cultures through 44,000 photographs, 10,000 recordings, 75 language dictionaries over a 33 year period at the turn of the last Century. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 by Paula | 2/11/2014

    " I really enjoyed Egan's other books--the historical facts laced with personal narratives of the characters whose lives were affected. And while I'm interested in Edward S. Curtis and his work, this book failed to capture me in the same way. It's due at the library, so I'm taking it back unfinished. I may, however, look online for more of Curtis's photography. I wished there had been more of those included in Egan's book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Mary-lynne | 1/25/2014

    " Curtis rose from a grade-school drop-out to one of the most well-known names of his time. Then he dropped to being essentially an unknown by the time he died. One of the most fascinating factoids for me was that two of his assistants went on to be two of the greatest and best known women photographers of their time: Imogen Cunningham and Ella McBride. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Margie Lee | 1/13/2014

    " I thought Curtis was an amazing person. His dedication was inspiring but his treatment so sad. He was ahead of his time for sure "

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