THE ORCHID THIEF: A True Story of Beauty and Obsession

Susan Orlean, Author, Jennifer Meyers, Read by, Jennifer Jay Myers, Read by , read by Jennifer Jay Myers. Random House Audible $39.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-553-75656-2

For listeners seeking to learn something new, Orlean offers a whimsical look at the sexy, mysterious world of orchids. Perfect for anyone who wants to know a little bit about a lot of things, this quirky, quintessential New Yorker story pulls back the curtain on a community of people who are driven by a passion to collect and cultivate some very exotic plants. New York journalist Orlean first learned about orchid "thief" John Laroche by reading a story about him in a local Florida newspaper. He (along with his henchmen, three Seminole Indians) had been taken to court for removing an endangered species of orchid from the state's Fakahatchee Swamp. Orlean hightailed it down to the Sunshine State to investigate and wound up immersing herself in the wacky world of orchid maniacs, intrigued more by their passion than by the orchids themselves. Myers's reading vacillates between the inspiring and the pedagogical. When reading passages about the over-the-top nature of some eccentric orchid collectors, her tone borders on the affected. But during the book's more introspective moments, as when Orlean wishes she could be as passionate about something as her subjects are about orchids, Myers turns quiet and pensive. Overall, Myers's enthusiastic performance is a perfect complement to Orlean's book and the new motion picture loosely based on it, Adaptation. Based on the Random hardcover. (Sept.)

Reviewed on: 01/06/2003
Release date: 10/01/2002
Genre: Audio
Paperback - 350 pages - 978-0-09-928958-6
Hardcover - 304 pages - 978-0-679-44739-9
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