Just before the sun came up one wintery morning in 1994, two thieves broke into Norway's national art museum. Climbing a ladder to a second floor window, one criminal suffered a spectacular fall but got up, brushed himself up, and went back up and through a second story window to steal Edward Munch's most famous painting - The Scream, which has been valued at $72 million.
The museum was fitted out with all kinds of security cameras and a fancy alarm system. But the only security guard never looked at the monitors and assumed that the alarm was false. And so the thieves easily escaped, heading off through the still-dark in a stolen car.
Of course the theft made headlines all over the world. It especially
embarassed the Norwegian government because it took place just as the
Winter Olympics began, in Lillehammer. Norwegian detectives set out to find the criminals. But a Scotland Yard detective named Charley Hill who will make up a new identity (he claime to work for the Getty Museum) and break the case.
This is an extremely fast-paced book that covers not only this heist but also others. Stolen masterpieces would fill a museum. There are more than five hundred Picassos, 43 Van Goghs, 174 Rembrandts, and even a Vermeer or two stolen.
This report prepared by Ann Gaines