THE KOLLWITZ CALAMITIES
A Megan Crespi Mystery Series Novel
By Alessandra Comini
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Two monumental granite statues by famed German artist Käthe Kollwitz—the Grieving Parents—have been stolen from a World War I soldiers’ cemetery in Belgium. What could the motive have been for such an unlikely theft? On a visit to the director of the Kollwitz Museum in Cologne, retired art history professor and Kollwitz scholar Megan Crespi is asked to aid in tracking down the robber or robbers. As she pursues clues and visits possible suspects more Kollwitz statues are stolen in Cologne and Berlin. Crespi’s itinerary takes her to the Berlin Kollwitz Museum, Weimar, the Baltic Sea island of Rügen, Greifswald, and finally to the Kollwitz House in Moritzburg. On the way she interacts with physicians Abraham Rückgabe and Iliana Frankel, the just-married couple Monika von Putbus and Akram al-Aljamie, and unscrupulous CEO of Rügen’s asbestos-contaminated Dorotek factory, Reinhold Fromm, collector of dominatrix drawings. We meet possible suspects, Iranian prince Yusri Pahlavi, greedy Lukas Zamann of the Galerie Zamann, and the mysterious “Marie Schmidt,” of Moritzburg, Kollwitz’s final home. All seem to be connected to the spate of Kollwitz thefts. Can Crespi solve these thefts and will the precious artworks be found? An unexpected denouement involving seven persons and two cats gives us the answer.
Distinguished Professor of Art History Emerita at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, Alessandra Comini was awarded Austria’s Grand Medal of Honor for her books on Viennese artists Egon Schiele and Gustav Klimt. Her Egon Schiele’s Portraits was nominated for the National Book Award and her The Changing Image of Beethoven is used in classrooms around the country. Both books in new editions are now available from Sunstone Press as well as The Fantastic Art of Vienna, Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt, and Schiele in Prison. Comini’s travels, recorded in her memoir, In Passionate Pursuit, also from Sunstone Press, extend from Europe to Antarctica and are reflected in her Megan Crespi Mystery Series: Killing for Klimt, The Schiele Slaughters, The Kokoschka Capers, The Munch Murders, and The Kandinsky Conundrum, all published by Sunstone Press.
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