From the opening pages, when two thieves dressed as policemen steal $500 million worth of art from a Boston museum, The Gardner Heist (HarperCollins, $14.99) speeds along like fiction. What follows is journalist Ulrich Boser’s precise, fascinating unraveling of the greatest art-crime in history and the obsessive investigations that followed. Boser illuminates the shadowy black markets that swallowed the paintings. He also shares the quirky history of the Gardner Museum itself. We meet its eccentric founder, the 19th-century heiress Isabella Stewart Gardner, along with the many art detectives, underworld denizens, and aficianados whose lives have been warped by the theft. The Gardner Heist is at once a page-turning mystery and a poignant meditation on the seductive, sometimes destructive, power of art.
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