Reiner Leist has photographed this cross-section of Americans with so much empathy and sensitivity that the souls of the participants come directly across to the reader. I have never encountered a photographer, especially a portraitist, with such empathy for his sitters. The format of the book, which pairs a childhood photograph selected by a participant with a corresponding adult portrait taken by Reiner Leist is unique. The juxtaposition of the two photographs has the powerful effect of conveying a sense of identity across boundaries of time and geography.
I can't recommend this book highly enough and have bought it for everyone on my holiday gift list! The book itself is beautifully made. One comes away from each viewing/reading of it with a heightened sensitivity to one's own (im)mortality, the passage of time and the presence of place.