The creation of a book that has been five decades in making. A stunning collection of photos taken by Steve McCurry, the legendary photographer, features photographs featuring children from his long and distinguished career.

  • American photographer Steve McCurry has a new book out called Stories and Dreams: Portraits of Childhood
  • “He brings to Stories and Dreams a rare selection of images from children in 46 different countries.”
  • Ziauddin Yousafzai is the father of Malala.


Steve McCurry, an American photographer has created a remarkable body of work that spans five decades. It includes stunning photographs of children.

And some of these striking pictures have been bound together in a new book – Stories and Dreams (Laurence King Publishing).

The publisher says: ‘Throughout his long career, McCurry has taken incredible photographs of children, each one managing to hint at an epic story.

‘In Stories and dreamsHe brings 46 images of children, from Jaipur through Rome, to his unique collection. The new contemplative and sensitive title features some previously unpublished images which span the length of McCurry’s storied career.’

In the introduction to the book, Ziauddin Yousafzai, father of Malala, explains why he thinks McCurry’s photos are so special. He writes: ‘Steve McCurry’s unforgettable images brilliantly capture [the]The humanity and hearts of children extend beyond our borders. His art becomes a sort of meditation which is profound and unforgettable.’

Scroll down for ten arresting images from the new book. 

A boy rests against a cow in Kathmandu, Nepal, in an image taken in 2013. Cows have been designated the national animal in Nepal. They roam freely, and are considered sacred by the 80 per cent of Nepalis who are Hindu

An image of a boy resting against the cow in Kathmandu (Nepal) was taken in 2013. The national animal of Nepal is the cow. The cows are free to roam and considered sacred by Hindus, who make up 80 percent of Nepalis.

A family rides a donkey in Maimana, Afghanistan, in a picture taken in 2003. McCurry explains that here the father is taking his children home from a trip to the market

In a 2003 photo, a family is seen riding a donkey through Maimana in Afghanistan. McCurry says that McCurry is explaining to McCurry that this father is returning home after a visit to the market with his children.

Children play on a tank in Beirut, Lebanon, in 1982. McCurry says: 'These tools of war became an improvised playground demonstrating the resilience of children. No matter how dire the situation, how dangerous the environment, children need to play. Whether it is splashing in puddles or climbing on abandoned tanks, their world of make-believe is almost as important as food and shelter'

In 1982, children play on a tank at Beirut (Lebanon). McCurry states that these tools of war were transformed into an informal playground, demonstrating children’s resilience. Children need to have fun, no matter what the circumstances or how hazardous the surroundings. Children need to play, whether it’s in water puddles and on tanks.

Boys play on the Belo sur Mer beach in Morondava, Madagascar, in an image taken in 2019

A group of boys playing on the Belo sur Mer beaches in Morondava in Madagascar. This image was taken in 2019.

A little girl laughing at St. Paul's Basilica in Rome in 1990

'I photographed this boy flexing his muscles in the marble carving district of Mandalay, Myanmar (Burma), where he lived,' McCurry explains. 'Tens of thousands of statues are carved there every year.' The image was taken in 2017

LEFT: A little girl laughing at St. Paul’s Basilica in Rome in 1990. McCurry describes: McCurry said: ‘I photographed the boy exercising his muscles in Mandalay, Myanmar (Burma), which is where he lived. Every year, there are many thousands of sculptures. This image was taken in 2017.

This image was taken in Germany, in 1990. McCurry reveals: 'I spent three weeks with the Rabe family in Flechtingen, which was then East Germany. They gave me complete access to their lives. It was a great experience to get to know them'

The image was taken in Germany in 1990. McCurry says: “I spent three weeks in Flechtingen with the Rabe family, then East Germany. I had complete access to their daily lives. It was an amazing experience getting to know them.

This 2011 photo shows three young girls in Enna, Sicily, taking part in a Holy Week celebration

The photo of three girls from Enna (Sicily) during Holy Week 2011 is taken by this photographer

This image shows a father and daughter on Dal Lake in Srinagar, Kashmir, in 1996. They're on their way to a floating vegetable market. McCurry explains that thousands of people there use these canoe-like boats to go to and from their homes

The image depicts a father-daughter couple at Dal Lake, Srinagar in Kashmir in 1996. The couple is on their way towards a floating vegetable marketplace. McCurry says that there are thousands of canoe-like boat users in the area who use them to get to their homes. 

Children cross a  bridge in Mizoram, India, in a picture that McCurry took in 2006

Children cross a  bridge in Mizoram, India, in a picture that McCurry took in 2006

Stories and Dreams: Portraits of Childhood by Steve McCurry is out now (£40, Laurence King Publishing)

Stories and Dreams: Portraits of Childhood by Steve McCurry is out now (£40, Laurence King Publishing)