Sav­ing Mona Lisa: The Bat­tle to Pro­tect the Lou­vre and its Trea­sures from the Nazis

  • From the Publisher
March 29, 2018

In August 1939, cura­tors at the Lou­vre nes­tled the world’s most famous paint­ing into a spe­cial red vel­vet-lined case and spir­it­ed her away to the Loire Val­ley. So began the biggest evac­u­a­tion of art and antiq­ui­ties in his­to­ry. As the Ger­mans neared Paris in 1940, the French raced to move the mas­ter­pieces still fur­ther south, then again and again dur­ing the war, criss­cross­ing the south­west of France. Through­out the Ger­man occu­pa­tion, the muse­um staff fought to keep the price­less trea­sures out of the hands of Hitler and his hench­men, often risk­ing their lives to pro­tect the coun­try’s artis­tic heritage.

Thus a sto­ry that fea­tures as a vignette in the George Clooney film The Mon­u­ments Men is giv­en the full-length treat­ment it demands. The recip­i­ent of sev­er­al inde­pen­dent pub­lish­ing awards in the Unit­ed States, and illus­trat­ed through­out with near­ly 100 pho­tographs, Sav­ing Mona Lisa is a com­pelling true sto­ry of art and beau­ty, intrigue and inge­nu­ity, and remark­able moral courage in the dark­est of times.

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