The story begins with a major art theft and murder of a famous art collector's wife. This sets the stage for the theme of art theft.
Then an original Van Gogh - the portrait of M. Trubec - worth 50 million dollars, shows up at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, sent by a woman in Argentina. Clay Ryder, NYPD detective, sets out to trace where the painting actually comes from. In 1944, a Jewish widow had accused a German SS officer of stealing the painting. Ryder manages to find the only surviving relative of the widow, her grand-daughter, Rachel Meredith, who teaches at NYU. She is presented with the painting.
But then Rachel's life is in danger. People are trying to buy the painting from her, but she is also being threatened. Could it be that the painting was purposely sent from Argentina to get it on the market? The SS officer was reported to have been killed in a car accident many years ago, but perhaps he is still alive. The painting may have been in a black-market auction in the seventies.
When Rachel is brutally attacked, Ryder also realizes how much she means to him. Her husband, in another interesting twist in this story, turns out to be someone completely other than what she always believed. Can she trust anyone now?
And Israel's Massad is also very interested in the painting's appearance , because they have been wondering about this SS officer; if he is still alive, he needs to be tried for his terrible war crimes.
This report prepared by Tena van't Foort