In glittering Vienna in 1903, Adele Block, a Jewess from a
wealthy family, loves art and wants to study everything
about art. However, in that era, it is unacceptable for
women to study. Her role is to marry and raise a family.
When she meets Ferdinand Bauer, a very wealthy sugar baron,
many years older, he recognizes her dreams. He promises if
she marries him, he will take care of her and give her the
access to the artistic community she craves. As Mrs.
Bauer, she gains the freedom she yearns for. Ferdinand
takes her to galleries, introduces her to Berta
Zuckerkandlls, a patron of the arts, who becomes her good
friend and mentor. She meets handsome painter, Gustav
Klimt, a renowned artist who is the most daring and
innovative artist in Europe. Their chemistry clicks and he
asks her to be his model and his muse for his next
painting. An affair begins.
Maria and Fritz Altman are lovestruck newlyweds in Austria
in 1938. Dancing in a gorgeous ballroom, they are
interrupted by an urgent radio message from the Chancellor
of Austria. Hitler's army is at the Austrian border and no
one is to offer any resistance. Immediately the guests
flee and Maria's parents instruct her to get their
passports, their jewels and money and get out.
Unfortunately, Fritz did not follow through on updating his
passport and no way would they give him one now. Fritz
tells Maria to leave immediately and he will meet her later.
Maria is adamant that she will not leave without him and her
anguish begins. The cruel and heartless grip of the Nazi's
on the Jews is a thrilling story and Maria is a heroine that
you will love and root for.
If you enjoy a book about love, family, war, betrayals,
and art, STOLEN BEAUTY is one for you. Laurie Lico Albanese
does an impeccable job of research, and the historical
detail is sweeping in its scope. Both Adele and Maria rely
on their voices to tell their respective stories.in
different narratives, different timelines. Strong willed,
courageous, they are truly heroines that will have you
turning the pages until the end. A very good read and I
look forward to the next one by Ms. Albanese. Brava!
From the dawn of the twentieth century to the devastation of
World War II, this exhilarating novel of love, war, art, and
family gives voice to two extraordinary women and brings to
life the true story behind the creation and near destruction
of Gustav Klimt’s most remarkable paintings.
In the dazzling glitter of 1900 Vienna, Adele
Bloch-Bauer—young, beautiful, brilliant, and Jewish—meets
painter Gustav Klimt. Wealthy in everything but freedom,
Adele embraces Klimt’s renegade genius as the two awaken to
the erotic possibilities on the canvas and beyond. Though
they enjoy a life where sex and art are just beginning to
break through the façade of conventional society, the city
is also exhibiting a disturbing increase in anti-Semitism,
as political hatred foments in the shadows of Adele’s coffee
house afternoons and cultural salons.
Nearly forty years later, Adele’s niece Maria Altmann is a
newlywed when the Nazis invade Austria—and overnight, her
beloved Vienna becomes a war zone. When her husband is
arrested and her family is forced out of their home, Maria
must summon the courage and resilience that is her aunt’s
legacy if she is to survive and keep her family—and their
Will Maria and her family escape the grip of Nazis’ grip?
And what will become of the paintings that her aunt nearly
sacrificed everything for?
Impeccably researched and a “must-read for fans of Kristin
Hannah’s The Nightingale and Paula McLain’s
Circling the Sun” (Christina Baker Kline, #1 New
York Times bestselling author), Stolen Beauty
intertwines the tales of two remarkable women across more
than a hundred years. It juxtaposes passion and discovery
against hatred and despair, and shines a light on our
ability to love, to destroy, and above all, to endure.