Book Reviews of The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession

The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession
The Orchid Thief A True Story of Beauty and Obsession
Author: Susan Orlean
ISBN-13: 9780449003718
ISBN-10: 044900371X
Publication Date: 1/2000
Pages: 284
Rating:
  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
 151

3.5 stars, based on 151 ratings
Publisher: Ballantine
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

16 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 3352 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 8
I really enjoyed this. Uses the biography of a modern day orchid thief as the fabric into which author weaves interesting history and anecdotal tidbits. Language gets very course - but only when the person referred to speaks that way.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 324 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Really enjoyed this book (didn't care much for the movie), and if you read it, be prepared to start buying orchids. You won't be able to help it.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 23 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
Anyone who enjoys orchids will enjoy this book - the narrative is more a documentary than a story, but well done.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 4 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 3
This is a nonfiction book about the trade in illegal orchids. The author is a little too self interested, but it's still a good story.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 161 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
THE BOOK WAS SLOW TO ME. BUT I HAD SEEN THE MOVIE FIRST SO I THINK THAT RUINED IT. MAKES ME WANT TO GO TO FLORIDA AND SEE THE ORCHIDS.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 192 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
An interesting book about Florida, Orchids and obsession.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 879 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Researching and writing about the John Laroche, orchid thief and more, the author adds history about other thieves, orchids, Seminole life, and much about the beautiful Fakahatchee Strand. A mercurial character, Laroche considers himself more intelligent than most men. He loves orchids and searches them out wherever he can find them, primarily in Fakahatchee where he hikes about looking for the elusive ghost orchid and something that no one else has discovered. As the story begins he is being prosecuted for stealing orchids and other plants from the Fakahatchee.

As the author encounters other orchid growers, collectors and lovers she finds herself drawn ever closer to the background of orchids and those who love it. Original orchids were plucked from the wild but cloning and reproduction of modern orchids has increased the variety to thousands. Nevertheless, many wild orchids have been lost due to those who would remove all they found from any given spot.

For me, this was a most enjoyable read. Who ever knew people could be so passionate about orchids as to kill others, steal prize winners or undermine the efforts of others who want to become part of this enchanting world. Truly this is a good, good read.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 10 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
This is the true story of a writer who investigates an old theft in the Florida Everglades. The character she's writing about is truly a character. This starts slow but i found myself fascinated with the orchid world and how the people who love them - who are obsessed with them, operate. I now own about 20 or so orchids myself; that's since I read the book! This was edifying/enriching but a very strange topic.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 224 more book reviews
I thought this book was great for what it was, but didn't really grab me. Be prepared to read a lot of detail about orchids! I love orchids, have many, and maybe it's the "I don't want to read anything too serious at bedtime" syndrome but it was all a little too detailed and too, well, serious, for me. It's a true story, doesn't appear to follow the movie it references much (Adaptation). Despite the fact that it wasn't the book I was in the mood to read, it is well-written, interesting, and a story that has never been told.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on
This is a very unusual and highly readable book. It's well worth your time, and after you read it, be sure to see the movie, which isn't at all like the book, but is strange and fascinating. Both thumbs up!
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 89 more book reviews
I just finished this book tonight and am sitting here pondering what in the world possessed me to order it in the first place. I must have thought it would involve a good mystery or something. I sure didn't expect it to go that deep into orchids, the weirdness of those who worship them, the many illegal ways they're obtained, and talk of a swamp over and over..and over. The main character, John Laroche was boring at best. It's like he used the Indians to do his dirty work and then got off scott free. I sincerely hated this book. I kept reading hoping it would get better but it didn't. I was really disappointed with the ending...the ever elusive ghost orchid that the whole book talked about and never finished with. Just a terrible, terrible book.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on
I actually went out and bought an orchid after reading this..uh oh..I'm hooked.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 33 more book reviews
I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I am new to Florida and have just a smattering of knowledge about orchids. The writer hits all the right notes from a little bit of the history of Florida to the underworld of orchid thievery, to the snobishness of some people at orchid shows. The book contains a bibliography, a reader's guide and discussion topics. One reviewer called the book"deliciously weird and compelling." It's a fascinating, absorbing and frequently hilarious true tale.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 69 more book reviews
loved the book, very interesting
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on + 8 more book reviews
Interesting story.
reviewed The Orchid Thief: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession on
I was recommended this book, but I have to say that I was disappointed.