Customer Reviews for

The Mercury Visions of Louis Daguerre

Average Rating 4
( 4 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1
  • Posted February 2, 2009

    more from this reviewer


    While French artist and scientist Louis Daguerre is recognized for his invention of the daguerreotype photographic process, his life was the stuff of great drama. He was, indeed, a founding father of photography yet his battle for that honor was hard won, as he had to fight to protect his patent. However, that struggle was a small price compared to the physical effects of the pursuit of his passion. Daguerre exposed himself to mercury vapors, a necessity to engrave the images on a plate. The danger was that he could not avoid some exposure to mercury poisoning, which was eventually his downfall. The great man became delusional, convinced that the end of the world was near - as soon as a year. We hear: ''When the vision came, he was in the bathtub. After a decade of using mercury vapors to cure his photographic images, Louis Daguerre's mind had faltered¿a pewter plate left too long on this cold evening of 1846, he felt a strange calm. Outside, a light snow was falling and a vaporous blue dusk seemed to be rising out of the Seine. ' Then, he made a list of what needed to be photographed before it was too late. His choices were a beautiful nude woman, the sun, the moon, the perfect Paris boulevard, a pastoral scene, galloping horses, a perfect apple, a flower, the king of France, and Isobel Le Fournier. (A woman Daguerre loved) Smith is masterful as he traces Daguerre's descent into madness. This is a bravura debut novel, outstanding not only for the history of photography but for its psychological aspects and picture of mid nineteenth century Paris. Although born in New England actor Stephen Hoye spent much of his professional life in London. Many will remember him for his Audie winning narration of Rich Dad, Poor Dad. He really comes to the fore with this story, imbuing it with a stage trained actor's resonant voice and skillfully persuasive phrasing. Highly recommended. - Gail Cooke

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 review with 5 star rating   See All Ratings
Page 1 of 1