I'm nearing the end of Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World's Stolen Treasures by Robert K. Wittman, and as I'm listening (I'm doing the audiobook thing) to his stories about rescuing a Rodin or saving one of the original copies of the Bill of Rights, it occurs to me that novels (and the occasional non-fiction title) that are centered in the art world or revolve around art in even a peripheral way are absolutely a sub-genre I gravitate toward. If you're like me, make a little room on your TBR list for some of the books below.
An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin - Set in the New York art world, this book follows a young art dealer as she succumbs the headiness of big deals and the quest for prestige. I loved this book and the way it allowed me to peer into a small corner of the art world.
Goldfinch by Donna Tartt - I was sold on this book the minute I learned that Theo, the book's protagonist, steals The Goldfinch by Carel Fabritius. Some of my favorite parts of this book are the inside look into antiques dealing and when Tartt thrusts us into a web of art traffickers.
The World to Come by Dara Horn - Horn centers her story around the theft of Marc Chagall's Over Vitebsk. Interesting aside, according to The Guardian, Chagall is the third most stolen artist. This story moves effortlessly between the modern-day story of Benjamin Ziskind (who steals the piece) and his sister, both grieving the death of their mother, and the world of Chagall and Der Nister. I only wish I'd stopped reading at page 260 (stop reading at page 260).
Faking It by Jennifer Crusie - Think family, love, and deception around a family-run art gallery. It's been awhile since I've read this one, but the warm fuzzies it gave me still linger in the corners of my mind.
Girl With a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier - This is another title from my wayback backlist machine. Chevalier imagines the story behind the model in Girl With a Pearl Earring and the painter, Johannes Vermeer. Again, I don't remember a lot of specifics, but I do recall really enjoying this book.