Synopses & Reviews
In the last days of World War II, a thousand year-old trove of artworks and manuscripts, worth $200 million, disappeared from a mineshaft in Germany. Among the missing items were the world-famous Samuhel Gospels, a spectacular gold, silver and jewel encrusted ninth-century manuscript given to the Quedlinburg cloister by Germany's first King and hidden away by Heinrich Himmler in the last days of the Reich.
Forty-five years later, in an odyssey that stretched from the insular New York art world, to the quaint medieval town of Quedlinburg in central Germany, to a desolate Texas ghost town, New York Times reporter William Honan uncovered the clues that cracked the biggest and longest unsolved art theft of the century. Now he tells the complete story of how he tracked the thief--a compulsive kleptomaniac American G.I.--along a trail that had grown cold after almost half a century, leading him to the lost art in a small Texas farm town. It is a detective story filled with thrills, chills and laughs; a real-life mystery about the desperate search for the lost treasure, and the scores of art dealers, collectors, lawyers and officials all too easily corrupted by contact with it.