The Orchid Thief by Susan Orlean

For more works of narrative journalism and strange crimes, try these:

The Tall Man by Chloe Hooper for a thoughtful exploration of the uneasy relationship between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Australians.

Iphigenia in Forest Hills by Janet Malcolm for a masterclass by one of the most intellectually and morally precise writers around. 

Night Games by Anna Krien for an explosive examination of sex, power and sport, focusing on a rape trial that divided fans and feminists. 

Last Bets by Michaela McGuire for a casino manslaughter trial and an examination of gambling and the gap between morals and the law.

This post was guest edited by journalist Michaela McGuire, author of Last Bets. Michaela also hosts Women of Letters, and blogs for The Monthly

The post is part of a series in partnership with the Ubud Writers & Readers Festival, which runs from October 1-5, 2014. More info here.