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The Orchid Thief
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Jump down to see edition details for: Hardcover | Paperback | CD/Spoken Word | Cassette/Spoken Word | Prebinding
Bibliographic Detail
Publisher David McKay Co
Publication date January 1, 1999
Pages 284
Binding Hardcover
Book category Adult Non-Fiction
ISBN-13 9780679447399
ISBN-10 0679447393
Dimensions 1.25 by 6.25 by 10 in.
Weight 1.20 lbs.
Availability§ Publisher Out of Stock Indefinitely
Original list price $25.00
§As reported by publisher
Summaries and Reviews
Summary
A staff writer for The New Yorker describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants. 25,000 first printing. Tour.
Amazon.com description: Product Description: In Susan Orlean's mesmerizing true story of beauty and obsession is John Laroche, a renegade plant dealer and sharply handsome guy, in spite of the fact that he is missing his front teeth and has the posture of al dente spaghetti. In 1994, Laroche and three Seminole Indians were arrested with rare orchids they had stolen from a wild swamp in south Florida that is filled with some of the world's most extraordinary plants and trees. Laroche had planned to clone the orchids and then sell them for a small fortune to impassioned collectors. After he was caught in the act, Laroche set off one of the oddest legal controversies in recent memory, which brought together environmentalists, Native Amer-ican activists, and devoted orchid collectors. The result is a tale that is strange, compelling, and hilarious.
        
New Yorker writer Susan Orlean followed Laroche through swamps and into the eccentric world of Florida's orchid collectors, a subculture of aristocrats, fanatics, and smugglers whose obsession with plants is all-consuming. Along the way, Orlean learned the history of orchid collecting, discovered an odd pattern of plant crimes in Florida, and spent time with Laroche's partners, a tribe of Seminole Indians who are still at war with the United States.
        
There is something fascinating or funny or truly bizarre on every page of The Orchid Thief: the story of how the head of a famous Seminole chief came to be displayed in the front window of a local pharmacy; or how seven hundred iguanas were smuggled into Florida; or the case of the only known extraterrestrial plant crime. Ultimately, however, Susan Orlean's book is about passion itself, and the amazing lengths to which people will go to gratify it. That passion is captured with singular vision in The Orchid Thief, a once-in-a-lifetime story by one of our most original journalists.

Editions
Hardcover
Book cover for 9780679447399 Book cover for 9781568957364
 
With Susan Orlrean | Large print edition from Wheeler Pub Inc (July 1, 1999)
9781568957364 | details & prices | 353 pages | 6.25 × 9.75 × 1.25 in. | 1.50 lbs | List price $26.95
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants
The price comparison is for this edition
from David McKay Co (January 1, 1999)
9780679447399 | details & prices | 284 pages | 6.25 × 10.00 × 1.25 in. | 1.20 lbs | List price $25.00
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants
Paperback
Book cover for 9780449003718
 
from Ballantine Books (January 1, 2000)
9780449003718 | details & prices | 284 pages | 5.75 × 8.50 × 0.75 in. | 0.64 lbs | List price $16.00
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants
CD/Spoken Word
Book cover for 9780553756562 Book cover for 9781565116900
 
With Jennifer Jay Myers (other contributor) | Unabridged edition from Random House (September 1, 2002)
9780553756562 | details & prices | 6.00 × 4.75 × 2.00 in. | 0.90 lbs | List price $39.95
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants.
With Anna Fields (other contributor) | Abridged edition from Highbridge Co (July 18, 2002)
9781565116900 | details & prices | 5.75 × 4.75 × 1.00 in. | 0.50 lbs | List price $29.95
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants.
Cassette/Spoken Word
Book cover for 9781565116894
 
With Anna Fields (other contributor) | Abridged edition from Highbridge Co (September 1, 2002)
9781565116894 | details & prices | 4.00 × 7.25 × 1.25 in. | 0.35 lbs | List price $26.95
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants.
Prebinding
Book cover for 9780613280099
 
from Turtleback Books (September 1, 2000)
9780613280099 | details & prices | 5.75 × 8.50 × 0.75 in. | 0.90 lbs | List price $27.00
About: Describes the life and times of John Laroche, a plant smuggler and orchid thief, and the eccentric world of Florida's obsessed collectors of rare plants

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