Nationalism, Culture, Germany; Continent: Europe

Author Stephen Winder’s personal, meandering discussion of topics in pre-WWII history will make you laugh and think, often in the same chapter 480 pages (Bibliography begins page 379) I confess, I read Winder’s 2015 book, Danubia, before I got back to read Germania, his 2011 offering. Germania is the slightly shorter book (Danubia is a […]

Murder, Art; Region: Pacific Rim

Savage Harvest: A Tale of Cannibals, Colonialism, and Michael Rockefeller’s Tragic Quest by Carl Hoffman The author came for the facts, but he returned for the context 322 pages (280 without Acknowledgments, Notes and the bibliography) You wouldn’t think that a book that narrates a gruesome killing in the first couple chapters could be said […]

Art, Landmarks; Continent: North America, Europe

Liberty’s Torch: The Great Adventure to Build the Statue of Liberty by Elizabeth Mitchell Do you picture crowds of eager New Yorkers welcoming France’s gift to the U.S. as she floated regally into New York harbor with a big red bow on her crown? That’s not exactly what happened. 310 pages (271 pages, including Epilogue […]

Art, True Crime; Continent: North America, Europe

A review of two books for a change In Priceless, authors Robert Wittman and John Shiffman write about the art crimes the general public thinks of: multimillion-dollar theft from museums, galleries and private collections. Chasing Aphrodite authors Jason Felch and Ralph Frammolino, on the other hand, write about a more pervasive type of crime perpetrated […]

Society, Individualism; Continent: Europe, North America

Amsterdam: A History of the World’s Most Liberal City by Russell Shorto Not a travel guide, but not packing this book for your trip to this exceptional city would be a mistake 357 pages (318 pages excluding Notes and Index but including the short and worthy Postscript) This book is definitely a love letter to […]

Book 1; Continent: Europe

The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert M. Edsel and Bret Witter 468 pages (402 pages of narrative content) Sure, see the movie. I enjoyed it. Then get a richer context for the Monuments Men through the detailed and insightful book. I’d been excited to see […]

Book 20; Continent: Europe

The Forger’s Spell (P.S.) by Edward Dolnick 384 pages (258 pages excluding Notes, etc.) You might take in this little gem after your next trip to an art museum or gallery…especially if going wasn’t your idea. It’s not The Thomas Crown Affair, so don’t expect some slickly handsome protagonist in a sequence of clever, hair-raising […]