The Cloud Garden

The Cloud Garden

3.9 (346 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author)  , By (author) 

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Description

Tom Hart Dyke, a young botanist, set off to Central America with one thing on his mind: orchids. Paul Winder, was backpacking through the area at the same time. Ignoring the Lonely Planet guide - 'Don't even think about it!' - Tom and Paul set off into the Darien where FARC guerrillas who were to hold them hostage for the next nine months.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 400 pages
  • 126 x 196 x 24mm | 258.55g
  • Transworld Publishers Ltd
  • Corgi Books
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New edition
  • New edition
  • 0552771201
  • 9780552771207
  • 945,498

About Tom Hart Dyke

The Darien Gap is a place of legend. The only break in the Pan-American highway, which runs from Alaska to the tip of South America, it is an almost impregnable strip of swamp, jungle and cloud forest between the vast landmasses of North and South America. Stories of abduction and murder there are rife and in recent years more people have successfully climbed Everest or trekked to the South Pole than have crossed the Darien Gap. In 2000, Tom Hart Dyke, a young botanist, set off to Central America with one thing on his mind: orchids. He knew that in order to find the rare and beautiful species he so fervently admired, he would have to visit some of the most inhospitable places on earth. Unbeknown to Tom, another young explorer, Paul Winder, was backpacking through the area at the same time. Though he sometimes worked freelance in the City of London, Paul was a fearless and intrepid traveller, happier scaling volcanoes than lounging on beaches. In every bar and cafe along his route, rumours abounded of the Darien Gap - and the more he heard, the greater became his desire to make the journey. Pure chance brought Paul and Tom together in northern Mexico; they formed an instant bond and their fate was sealed. Ignoring a final, succinct warning from the Lonely Planet guide - 'Don't even think about it!' - Tom and Paul set off into the Darien: Tom in search of orchids, Paul in search of adventure. They would find plenty of each. For six days they made good progress. Then, just hours away from Colombia, the dream ended and the horror began. Paul and Tom were ambushed by FARC guerrillas who were to hold them hostage for the next nine months. From that day on, their survival was a matter of extraordinary endurance, incredible ingenuity and not a little good luck ...show more

Review Text

"'An amazing story, well-told, thrilling and moving...kidnapped by terrorists, held hostage at gunpoint, in fear of being beheaded...A mixture of hell and farce'"show more

Back cover copy

The Darién Gap is a place of legend. It is an almost impregnable strip of swamp, jungle and cloud forest between the vast landmasses of North and South America. Stories of abduction and murder there are rife and in recent years more people have successfully climbed Everest or trekked to the South Pole than have crossed the Darién Gap. In 2000, Tom Hart Dyke, a young botanist, set off to Central America with one thing on his mind: orchids. Unbeknown to Tom, another young explorer, Paul Winder, was backpacking through the area at that time. Pure chance brought them together in northern Mexico; they formed an instant bond and their fate was sealed. Ignoring a final, succinct warning from the Lonely Planet guide - 'Don't even think about it!' - Tom and Paul set off into the Darién: Tom in search of orchids, Paul in search of adventure. They would find plenty of each. For six days they made good progress. Then, just hours away from Colombia, the dream ended and the horror began. Paul and Tom were ambushed by guerrillas who were to hold them hostage for the next nine months. From that day on, their survival was a matter of extraordinary endurance, incredible ingenuity and not a little good luck...show more

Rating details

346 ratings
3.9 out of 5 stars
5 27% (95)
4 45% (155)
3 20% (69)
2 6% (22)
1 1% (5)
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