"The Tree of Life" is a thorough modern phylogenetic classification of life on this planet. This book is great for anyone interested in how different organisms are really related, from single-celled organisms up to humans and our close relatives. Anyone who has ever thought it strange that we should group turtles, crocodilians and dinosaurs together as "reptiles", but exclude birds (and mammals), will likely be interested in this book. The book is comprehensive, detailed, and well illustrated, and remarkably well-priced.
This book covers the whole range of life on Earth, though primates and other mammalian groups are given far more thorough treatment than bacteria and archaeans. Each section provides a description of the distinguishing features of the relevant group, with examples of some of the members, information on the fossil record, and plenty of illustrations.
The main drawback with such a work is, of course, that the field is changing rapidly and it is close to impossible to ever be fully up-to-date. Another minor, but slightly annoying, problem is that a number of errors have crept into the English translation, so, for example, "Pliocene" appears as "Pilocene" in many places in the book.*
Nonetheless, the scope of "The Tree of Life", the detailed description and the abundant illustrations make this an invaluable reference work for those interested in biological classification.
*Note: I assume that these errors are absent from the original French text.