Stolen Beauty is based on the true story behind the creation and near destruction of one of Gustav Klimt’s most remarkable paintings.
The novel gives voice to two extraordinary women — Adele Bloch-Bauer and Maria Altmann — whose lives overlapped briefly but whose biographies are forever connected by a work of art. Adele is the queen of Vienna salon society and the subject of Klimt’s “Woman in Gold;” Maria is Adele’s niece who summons the courage and resilience to honor her aunt’s legacy and keep her family and their history alive when the Nazis invade Vienna at the start of World War II.
Albanese artfully weaves Adele’s adventures amid the dazzling glitter of turn-of-the-century Vienna café society with Maria’s struggles during the rapidly darkening years of the 1930s of Nazi-occupied Austria. It juxtaposes passion and discovery against hatred and despair, and shines a light on our ability to love, to destroy, and above all, to endure.
About the Author
Laurie Lico Albanese has published fiction, poetry, journalism, travel writing, creative nonfiction and memoir. Her novels include Lynelle by the Sea, The Miracles of Prato and Stolen Beauty. Her books have been translated into Spanish, French, German and Portuguese.
Albanese grew up on Long Island and graduated from New York University with a degree in journalism. She recently earned her MFA in Creative Writing from Stonecoast at the University of Southern Maine. She lives with her husband in Montclair, NJ, where they raised their two grown children and enjoys spending time in nature and with other “book people.”