Susan Orlean's nonfiction book The Orchid Thief spawned not only a fascination with orchid poachers but also a very strange and self-referential movie adaptation starring Meryl Streep and Nicolas Cage and called (yes) Adaptation.
Orlean thrives on finding seemingly small stories and uncovering the wider motives that propel people to do the unthinkable. This year, The Library Book explores the 1986 torching of the Los Angeles Public Library, and along the way, Orlean taps into a love of libraries shared by readers everywhere.
Who better to recommend books? Read on for the books that inspired Orlean this year.
Susan Orlean's favorite reads of 2018
Books never let you down; they're a journey, an escape, a deep dive into information, a comfort, a pleasure, a surprise. If I'm lonely or bored or curious, I know I can turn to a book and feel transformed, almost as if by magic. —Susan Orlean
Sign up for the Amazon Book Review: Best books of the month * author interviews * the reading life * and more
Browse more celebrity picks: