‘The Lost Van Gogh’ tells the story of art sold like heroin – Pittsburgh Post Gazette

By Jeffrey Condran Jonathan Santlofer’s latest art historical thriller, “The Lost Van Gogh,” does everything the reader most admires about the genre: it’s a page-turner that follows compelling characters who not only dodge bullets — when they’re not firing them — but also engages in serious aesthetic and moral concerns regarding the value of art in people’s lives. Vincent van Gogh is the perfect subject for this novel, as important ideas about insanity and suicide, about the notion of the solitary genius, and about the power of images, are so often attached to the Dutch painter’s life and work. The evidence, if it’s needed, is right before our eyes with the last few years bringing us immersive exhibitions and multiple films made about his life — never mind the continuing flood of merchandise printed with images of his work. Surely, people the world over know more about Van Gogh’s brushstrokes than any other artist’s. Glimpse … Read more

Artist-author Santlofer’s ‘The Lost van Gogh’ is a brisk, engrossing mystery – South Florida SunSentinel

By Oline H. Cogdill Artist Jonathan Santlofer, whose meticulous research and insight to the creative process has made him the most prominent author of art-based mysteries, takes his engrossing approach to a new level with “The Lost van Gogh.” A sense of authenticity permeates the novels of Santlofer, whose artwork has been exhibited in New York’s Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Art Institute of Chicago, among others. Yet Santlofer never lets his research overwhelm his exciting plots. There is plenty of fodder for gripping plots with Nazi-looted art and the lucrative criminal enterprises of forgeries, thefts and more. The FBI and several large cities have art crime divisions. “The Lost van Gogh” marks the return of artist Luke Perrone and his girlfriend, Alexis Verde, last seen in Santlofer’s 2021 “The Last Mona Lisa.” The couple may have a missing self-portrait by Vincent van Gogh hidden under a rather ordinary painting Alexis bought from a … Read more

New York Magazine – TO DO

Read The Lost Van Gogh Estate-sale purchase gone wrong. Sourcebooks Landmark, January 2 Under the plain image of a woman’s face is the last, or next to last, self-portrait of Vincent van Gogh.  Who hid it and how it got into the hands of downtown artist Luke Perrone, last featured in Jonathan Santlofer’s mystery-thriller The Lost Mona Lisa, drives an investigation into both the anxiety of artistic influence  and the power and pain bundled up in a timeless work of art. With Illustrations by the author. – Carl Rosen. New York Magazine

Library Journal – Review of The Lost Van Gogh

The latest art thriller from Santlofer (The Last Mona Lisa) has historic European locations and appealing characters chasing down art stolen by horrible people. Rumors of a final self-portrait made by Vincent van Gogh on his deathbed have tantalized art historians and collectors since the artist’s death, but the painting is widely believed to be lost forever. Luke Perrone is an artist and great-grandson of the man who stole the Mona Lisa; his girlfriend Alexis Verde is the daughter of an art thief. Together, they discover a portrait that might be the missing van Gogh, but then it disappears from their hands. Reuniting with INTERPOL agent John Washington Smith, the trio set off to Europe to recover the missing painting in the hopes of answering questions about van Gogh’s final days. Soon they’re ensnared in the secrets of masterpieces stolen by the Nazis and protected by members of the French Resistance during World War II. … Read more

Booklist – Review of The Lost Van Gogh

“Writer and artist Santlofer assembled a trio of unlikely art sleuths in The Last Mona Lisa (2021), and now, much to their surprise, they’re thrown together once again. Art historian Alexis Verde (also known as Alexandra Green) acquires a painting that she and her honey, artist and art history teacher Luke Perrone, discover is concealing what just might be a long-lost self-portrait by Van Gogh. Tully, a down-and-out PI, has been hired to secure this work, which is promptly stolen from Alexis when she attempts to have it appraised. Luke reconnects with former INTERPOL analyst John Washington Smith for help, but, like many others, he’s not who he claims to be. As the action shifts to Amsterdam, the levels of deceit and danger escalate precipitously. Amidst the chaos and terror, Santlofer offers sympathetic glimpses into Van Gogh’s life and puzzling death and the French Resistance’s valiant efforts to save Paris’ treasures as the Nazis’ systematically … Read more

The Last Mona Lisa: Your Ticket to Adventure

Bestselling author and fine artist, Jonathan Santlofer, has taken a real-life event – the 1911 theft of Leonardo da Vinci’s Mona Lisa from the Salon Carré in the Louvre Museum – and used it as the basis for The Last Mona Lisa. A People Magazine Best Book of the Summer, this utterly irresistible adventure focuses on Luke Perrone, an Italian-American artist in his late 30s. Perrone has long been obsessed with his great-grandfather, Vincenzo Peruggia – an Italian artist working at the gallery who removed the protective case and frame and stole La Giocanda, aka the Mona Lisa.There’s a lot to keep track of, but don’t worry about getting lost – Santlofer knows just when and where to switch from one story to the next, what to reveal, and when. His masterful storytelling skills keep the reader eagerly turning pages, tearing breathlessly from past to present, from Paris to Florence and back again. Along with … Read more

NY Journal of Books

“As Luke [the protagonist] dives farther into his ancestor’s mind, we dive with him, hoping to exonerate the simple crook while admiring his bravado. We also take pause to consider complex questions about the value of art for the individual as well as for society.” In 1911, a Louvre worker took the Mona Lisa off the wall and absconded with it. Vincenzo Perrone kept the painting for more than two years. After returning to Italy, he contacted authorities, claiming he had committed an act of nationalism by bringing the painting back to the home of its creator, Leonardo da Vinci. These facts are documented in multiple sources, including the 2012 Joe Medeiros film The Missing Piece: Mona Lisa, Her Thief, The True Story. Writer and artist Jonathan Santlofer uses this robbery as the backdrop for his new novel. He creates a fictional grandson protagonist, Luke Perrone, and sends him on a quest to find the … Read more

Shelf Awareness for Readers

Into the pantheon of great art heist stories leaps The Last Mona Lisa, Jonathan Santlofer’s novel of intrigue, romance and murder. Its set in Florence, Paris and New York and centered on a cast of art scholars, forgers and–those most nefarious of public servants–librarians. One day, New Yorker Luke Perrone receives a curious e-mail from Italy: before his “sudden death,” a professor requested that Luke be contacted about a recent discovery–“what may have been your great-grandfather’s journal,” which is now at Florence’s Laurentian Library. Luke, a painter and assistant art professor, has spent two decades researching Vincent Peruggia, “my family’s most infamous criminal,” the man behind the 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre. Luke is only too happy to cross the pond and hunker down at the library, unaware that at Interpol headquarters in Lyon, a criminal intelligence analyst has him under communication surveillance Read more here at Shelf Awareness…  

The Today Show – Best Thrillers of 2021

Huge thank you to Harlan Coban and the Today Show for choosing “The Last Mona Lisa” for BEST READS! “Santlofer uses the real-life robbery and creates a really compelling story that takes place in 1911 and the present-day – fans of Dan Brown and Steve Berry will love it!” – Harlan Coben