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Publisher's Summary

One of People Magazine's Best Books of Summer!

"Unstoppable what-happens-next momentum." (Michael Connelly, number-one New York Times best-selling author)

"A deliciously tense read." (Ruth Ware, number-one New York Times best-selling author)

From award-winning crime writer and celebrated artist Jonathan Santlofer comes an enthralling tale about the 1911 theft of the Mona Lisa from the Louvre, the forgeries that appeared in its wake, and the present-day underbelly of the art world.

August, 1911: The Mona Lisa is stolen by Vincent Peruggia. Exactly what happens in the two years before its recovery is a mystery. Many replicas of the Mona Lisa exist, and more than one historian has wondered if the painting now returned to the Louvre is a fake, switched in 1911.

Present day: Art professor Luke Perrone digs for the truth behind his most famous ancestor: Peruggia. His search attracts an Interpol detective with something to prove and an unfamiliar but curiously helpful woman. Soon, Luke tumbles deep into the world of art and forgery, a land of obsession and danger.

The Last Mona Lisa is a suspenseful and seductive tale, perfect for fans of the Netflix documentaries This Is a Robbery and Made You Look and listeners obsessed with the world of art heists and forgeries.

©2021 by Jonathan Santlofer (P)2021 Brilliance Publishing, Inc., all rights reserved.

Critic Reviews

“Ballerini's smooth voice and lyrical use of linguistics transport the listener to Italy and France as he portrays the suspenseful search to uncover the secrets behind the world-famous smile.… Listeners will find themselves drawn into the intrigue in an attempt to solve this startling whodunit thriller.” Booklist 

“Edoardo Ballerini's fast-paced narration amplifies the suspense in this fictionalized mystery about the very real controversy surrounding the authenticity of Leonardo da Vinci's MONA LISA.… Ballerini provides authentic voices and accents for the various Italians who aid Luke's research and switches to tough-guy New Yorker for Luke and the Interpol agent who is following him. Ballerini clearly distinguishes a cast of characters that include a dangerous hit man working for a collector of stolen art and a mysterious American woman who seduces Luke.” AudioFile Magazine

"Fabulous—instantly immersive, intriguing and suspenseful, and expert and authentic too ... only a writer who is also an artist—or an artist who is also a writer—could have pulled it off. This feels like the thriller Santlofer was born to write." - Lee Child, #1 New York Times bestselling author of the Jack Reacher series  

What listeners say about The Last Mona Lisa

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Be Prepared to Love It!

I have over 1,800 Audible books. This one belongs in the top 3. Fascinating story, remarkably refreshing writing, beautifully performed.

6 people found this helpful

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A 5-Star Mystery!

- Super-fast pace
- Memorable, likable characters
- International mystery + intrigue
- A touch of romance
- Art history lessons abound
- Based on a true story
- Excellent narration
- Great ending 👏

Thanks to Sourcebooks Landmark for an advanced digital reader copy via the NetGalley app. I loved it and purchased the audiobook.

6 people found this helpful

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Amazing performace of a brilliant story

The idea that Mona Lisa was stolen and that the one in the Louvre may be a copy results in a story with twists and turns forcing you to listen, even when it is late and you have to work the next day. But more than that, Ballerini's reading with authentic accent in French and Italian is fabulous, goes at a pace which matches the pace of the story. Highly recommended. At least as good as Dan Brown.

2 people found this helpful

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Flat characters

Stereotypes in the style of Baldacci. Predictable, their blindness propels the plot. Dead bodies everywhere. Ok if that’s your thing

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Very Average

The story is what pulled me in and why I purchased it, but it just didn’t take off. Not sure why this book gets such high reviews. The narration was good and probably the only reason I finished it. It wasn’t awful just very predictable. I could have done without the Russian assassin storyline.

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Dan Brown ...lite!

writing is amateurish, the plot is amateurish and the romance the same. Found it to be boring and predictable

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Has Some Gaps

A few storyline gaps, but an enjoyable read. Kind of like Halloween candy, you enjoy it but can wait until next year to have another piece.

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Love Painting Love Thrillers

As for a good art theft book with a plot of the faith and honesty and thieving A great novel great narration I may listen again!

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An interesting old fashioned who done it revolving around art

It was refreshing to read a book that didn’t have a political agenda. It had a good and intriguing story line and was well performed.

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Pat Feeney

Great beach or long drive read. Very well done audible and it keeps your attention. Great description of European cities as I have been there. Very accurate.