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National Geographic Rarely Seen: Photographs of the Extraordinary

4.54  ·  Rating details ·  280 ratings  ·  53 reviews
In this dazzling book of visual wonders, National Geographic reveals a world very few will have the chance to see for themselves. Shot by some of the world's finest photographers, New York Times bestseller Rarely Seen features striking images of places, events, natural phenomena, and manmade heirlooms seldom seen by human eyes. It's all here: 30,000-year-old cave art seale ...more
Hardcover, 400 pages
Published October 27th 2015 by National Geographic
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4.54  · 
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 ·  280 ratings  ·  53 reviews

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Jan 08, 2019 rated it really liked it
I've had this book sitting on a table for a few months now. Every so often I pick it up and look at several pages being careful that its bulk and mass doesn't slip out of my grasp and break something important in my house or body.

You may not agree that National Geographic has the best photographers, but few would dispute that their photographers are top level. In this book you will see how far they will go to get extraordinary photos. Into the stratosphere; in the ocean depths; on remote islands
Feb 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This book deserves more than 5 stars!!! Absolutely beautiful! You can never do wrong with National Geographic!
Marathon County Public Library
This book is absolutely gorgeous! From the highest mountains to the deepest caves, National Geographic brings us images from some amazingly talented photographers. These aren’t just any photos, but images of places and events that many of us will never get the chance to see in our lifetime. Some are secluded or protected places, some are once in a lifetime events, and others are simply gone due to environmental damage, but all come with a story. This book will inspire you to look at the beauty o ...more
The majority of these photos are stunning while the others are interesting to look at. Together they form an amazing book!
Mar 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Great collection of photographs! I learned new things about our world and had a great time doing it. I really like that the pictures take center stage and the words are minimal.
Sara Bennett
Jan 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: adult, nonfiction
This book caught my eye from the moment that I came across it. I loved the idea of rarely seen moments caught by photographers and then shared within this book. There were so many interesting shots, places, and moments captured. I felt like I learned a lot and my world was expanded by the wonderful shots. I also think this would make a great "coffee table book" and as it is interesting and makes for easy reading with all the pictures.
Rachel Rogers
Dec 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Stunning photos. Made even more stunning when you realize the skill, patience, daring do, and length of travel involved in taking most of them.
My husband queried me last night on whether I checked this book out because it would be a quick read and I'd be able to check off one more on my reading goal for the year and he's right. But I got so much pleasure out of the photos and the descriptions that it was worth it.
Jan 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I picked this book up by random chance at my local Barnes & Noble store. I was instantly seized by the stories that the pictures told. National Geographic books can be expensive, but I took a chance on this book and was extraordinarily glad that I did!! Not only is it a wonderful coffee table book (for those who enjoy those types of things), but it is wonderful to have great picture books like this in your household.

I would recommend this book highly to photographers, picture freaks, and th
Aug 24, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: art-photography
This book is humungous, which is nice because you can really see the detail in the photos. My favorite were places, especially with mud or lava in them. But a lot of them weren't actually super mind-blowing, which was disappointing.
Dec 13, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Extraordinary book of photography. I spent 2.5 hours reading each caption and looking over each image.

Look at this book with someone else: the images are so incredible you will want to show them and marvel together.
Mar 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: art-photography
Was amused to discover that the cover shot is of something created accidentally by humans. Truly amazing photographs
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
As expected from a National Geographic publication, the images selected for this collection are stunning. I was pleased to see that a number of photographers that I follow online are represented in this book, and I’ve even met a couple of them! The book is organized by the following topics: Phenomena, Life, Places, Objects and Moments and includes landscape, animal, people and objects. I gasped out loud from time to time when turning the pages of this gorgeous book. The sheer beauty of the peopl ...more
Jan 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Part of the Substitute Parent Project. Well Cinnamon loved it! Which is valuable input! The girls are onto me and my wanting to "connect" with them so they are having none of it. Poor sports. Considering leaving porn on the table and seeing if they react.

This book is everything you think it will be plus more. Breath-taking landscapes and also images of our current tech world that are rarely seen (thinking of Obama's 3-D portrait) and make me appreciate the very weird place we live in. If I won t
Sheri S.
Nov 12, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The photos in this book are truly amazing! Creative, colorful shots of the extraordinary and sometimes ordinary make up the pages of this book. One of my favorite photos is of a rare blue lobsters, but there are so many "favorite" pictures to choose from. I think it would be fun to use some of the photos as writing prompts for an English class. I took my time going through this book because I wanted to really enjoy and appreciate the photos.
Denise Chojnacki
Jun 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
The stunning photographs from this book recently were on display at a local museum. As I was not able to get to the showing, it was wonderful to be able to read about and enjoy the amazing photography from some of the world's most amazing places, people and other images. A feast for the eyes and a look into how incredible this world really is.
Dec 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Beautiful, beautiful, pictures in here. Absolutely stunning. Everyone who loves beautiful and awesome things should check out this book!
Feb 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Nice escape from dreary winter skies.
Castle Spooktacular
Mar 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2019-books
This book is full of magic and wonder!!!! A visual compilation of unusual and extraordinary places and happenings found in our world and beyond. Everyone needs to look it.
May 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Gorgeous book with amazing photos. The wonders out there in this world really are extraordinary! And I continue to add to my *huge* list of places I would like to get to someday.
Jan 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing
amazing & wonderful pictures
Thomas Ray
Nov 19, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: jennifer
397 pages, each with a National Geographic photo both pretty and rare. 11.5" x 9.5" x 1.5". 4.5 lb.
Aug 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
I could look at Nat Geo photos allllll day long. I loved the variety of the ones featured here.
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful photographs from around the world
Dec 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I've been reading a fair number of these sorts of books lately, and this is the best so far. Not only are the photos incredibly beautiful and unique, but the writing is well integrated and informative. Each image includes a short blurb providing description and context on the same page, and there are occasional longer comments, almost all by the photographers themselves, providing more detail about the image or the effort that went into capturing it, unlike another book where the longer descript ...more
Apr 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This is a neat collection of photographs of rarely seen subjects, some are animals such as migrating stingrays and microscopic creatures like the 0.2 inch long Plant-hopper Periwig; others are places like the Hell Hole with a fire burning for 40 years in Turkmenistan. The photos cover the world and are informative in that they show us photo subjects most of us would other wise never see. They include a mini-museum located in an abandoned service elevator in Manhattan, and a photo taken by Russia ...more
Jan 25, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
I have always been so impressed with National Geographic photography, and this coffee table book compilation of those photos was no exception. The book was divided into several sections: phenomena, life, places, objects and moments. From photos of snow leopards, one of my favorite wild cats, to Petra at night, to a peacock that was half albino and half regular feather coloring, these photos illuminated much of the natural world. Some of the amazing shots included lightning erupting from a volcan ...more
Matt Moran
Aug 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
It's a picture book, but I would give it 4.5. It takes relatively little time to read, but the pictures, from among several different motifs like objects and nature, are amazing. There is a slight push for the conservation of nature, but it's not over-powering. The one thing it's lacking are more details on the technique behind each photo. There's sometimes a story, but I'm talking about f-stop, shutter speed, and ISO settings. Are the pictures au natural or photoshopped in any way? How many tri ...more
Dec 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
As an avid photographer, I loved this book. The pictures overall are sublime. Most of the writing was quite good and I appreciated the insight. However, since National Geographic has a tendency to subtly inject evolutionary theory into the writing, I’ve lowered my rating to four stars. Stating that a scene is the result of millions of years is completely unnecessary for a book of extraordinary photographs. Let’s enjoy the beauty and leave out the indoctrination.
Champaign Public Library
Jan 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: staff-recommends
Recommended by Chris S.

Many books like this are beautiful, but this one has the most outstanding photographs, each with a small paragraph description. There are enough words but not too many words. It took me days to read, gaze and truly appreciate each and every photograph. NatGeo has outdone itself.
Karen Watkins
Dec 02, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Step 1: Buy This Book. Now. Yes, NOW.

Step 2: Give yourself this gift, this favor:
Luxuriate at least one hour to start your adventure with these photographs -- no matter what -- with no specific goal. Seat must be comfy. Plan to create the hour if hard to find.

Promise a wild & wonderful mystery ride.

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Susan Tyler Hitchcock has written 13 books, including Frankenstein: A Cultural History, Mad Mary Lamb, and Coming About: A Family Passage at Sea. She has degrees in English from the University of Michigan and the University of Virginia. She works as a book editor for the National Geographic Society. She has been collecting Frankensteiniana for more than 20 years. She and her husband live in the ho ...more