Best photography books chosen by critics

We list the best photography books recommended by critics from Washington Post, NPR, New York Times and many more. All critics' recommendations are referenced with customer reviews. The rating you see is an aggregate from several platforms and is always higher than 4 out of 5 stars.

4.9 Deep Springs Sam Contis

Deep Springs by Sam Contis

New York Times

“The young men in Sam Contis’s ‘Deep Springs’ look like taciturn farmhands and cowboys in a Hollywood film. They are in fact undergraduates at Deep Springs College.”

Featured in New York Times’ Best Photo Books of 2017.

$45
4.8 The Photo Ark

National Geographic The Photo Ark: One Man’s Quest to Document the World’s Animals

Washington Post

“This stunningly illustrated book shows one man’s race against time to record thousands of animal species around the world before environmental destruction snuffs many of them out forever. Sartore’s arresting photos are accompanied by the words of wildlife writer Douglas Chadwick.”

Featured in The Washington Post’s 2017 Best Book Gifts.

$12
4.6 The New Paris

The New Paris by Lindsey Tramuta

Smithsonian

“Through its colorful photography and intimate tone, Tramuta’s book invites readers to rethink what they know about the romantic, often-stereotyped city.”

Featured in Smithsonian’s Best Travel Books of 2017.

$20
4.4 Aerial Geology

Aerial Geology: A High-Altitude Tour of North America’s Spectacular Volcanoes, Canyons, Glaciers, Lakes, Craters, and Peaks

Smithsonian

“Offering a bird’s eye view that makes geology come alive, science and travel writer Mary Caperton Morton’s book feels like a personal helicopter ride across North America.”

Featured in Smithsonian’s Best Travel Books of 2017.

$20
4.4 Ravens

Ravens by Masahisa Fukase

New York Times

“This reissue of Masahisa Fukase’s 1986 classic Ravens brings back before an Anglophone public one of the great Japanese photo books.”

Featured in New York Times’ Best Photo Books of 2017.

$85
4.9 Welcome to Camp America

Welcome to Camp America: Inside Guantánamo Bay

New York Times

“Debi Cornwall knew she would not be allowed to take undeveloped negatives out of the U.S. naval base at Guantánamo Bay. So she came to the notorious detention facility with her own color developing kit.”

Featured in New York Times’ Best Photo Books of 2017.

$40