Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity
Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity

Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity

Illustrated by Brett Helquist
10 - 14
Reading age
Page count
Lexile measure
Sep 5, 2023
Publication date

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Publisher Summary

A “witty thriller” (The New York Times) for middle-grade readers about how the Mona Lisa was stolen from the Louvre, how the robbery made the portrait the most famous artwork in the world–and how the painting by Leonardo da Vinci should never have existed at all. SIBERT MEDAL WINNER - NAMED ONE OF THE BEST BOOKS OF THE YEAR BY Publishers Weekly - School Library Journal - Booklist - Kirkus Reviews - NPR - The New York Public Library - The Chicago Public Library - The Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books On a hot August day in Paris, just over a century ago, a desperate guard burst into the office of the director of the Louvre and shouted, La Joconde, c’est partie! The Mona Lisa, she’s gone! No one knew who was behind the heist. Was it an international gang of thieves? Was it an art-hungry American millionaire? Was it the young Spanish painter Pablo Picasso, who was about to remake the very art of painting? Travel back to an extraordinary period of revolutionary change: turn-of-the-century Paris. Walk its backstreets. Meet the infamous thieves–and detectives–of the era. And then slip back further in time and follow Leonardo da Vinci, painter of the Mona Lisa, through his dazzling, wondrously weird life. Discover the secret at the heart of the Mona Lisa–the most famous painting in the world should never have existed at all. Here is a middle-grade nonfiction, with black-and-white illustrations by Brett Helquist throughout, written at the pace of a thriller, shot through with stories of crime and celebrity, genius and beauty.

What Kind of Book is Mona Lisa Vanishes: A Legendary Painter, a Shocking Heist, and the Birth of a Global Celebrity


arthistorystealingParislaw and crime



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    Book Details

    Publication Date
    September 5, 2023
    Random House Studio
    Page Count
    Reading Age
    10 - 14 years
    Lib. of Congress (LCCN)
    Lexile® Level
    Est. Fountas & Pinnell Level
    Est. ATOS® Book Level

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    Core Score - 45%

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    Depth Score - 15%

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