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 breathtaking plot twists and whiplash reversals, The Last Mona Lisa offers readers an additional layer of pleasure. If you’ve been yearning to visit France or Italy but have been stymied by COVID-era travel fears, Santlofer’s book is the next best thing to a European vacation. The look and feel of Paris and Florence are expertly invoked. Santlofer has obviously spent time in the streets, art galleries, museums, churches, and cafes of both cities and renders them most effectively. And if you’ve been to the cities, it’ll be a bittersweet reminder of times past. If you haven’t, it’ll make you crave a cappuccino in an outdoor cafe halfway down a long and curving street in the shadow of an awe-inspiring, ancient cathedral.