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Download The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History Audiobook

Extended Audio Sample The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves, and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History Audiobook, by Robert M. Edsel Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,199 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Robert M. Edsel, Marlen Suyapa Bodden, Robert Edsel, Bret Witter Narrator: Jenna Lamia, Jeremy Davidson Publisher: Macmillan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: September 2009 ISBN: 9781427209412
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Now a major motion film!

At the same time Adolf Hitler was attempting to take over the western world, his armies were methodically seeking and hoarding the finest art treasures in Europe. The Fuehrer had begun cataloguing the art he planned to collect as well as the art he would destroy: "degenerate" works he despised.

In a race against time, behind enemy lines, often unarmed, a special force of American and British museum directors, curators, art historians, and others, called the Monuments Men, risked their lives scouring Europe to prevent the destruction of thousands of years of culture.

Focusing on the eleven-month period between D-Day and V-E Day, this fascinating account follows six Monuments Men and their impossible mission to save the world's great art from the Nazis.

Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • “That so much of what they stole was eventually recovered by this tiny band of determined people was nothing short of miraculous. It makes for a terrific story.”

    Washington Post Book World

  • “Edsel has presented their achievements in documentaries and photographs. He and Witter…Focusing on the organization’s role in northwest Europe, they describe the Monuments Men from their initial mission to limit combat damage to structures and artifacts to their changed focus of locating missing items. Most had been stolen by the Nazis. In southern Germany alone, over a thousand caches emerged, containing everything from church bells to insect collections. The story is both engaging and inspiring..[that] in the midst of a total war, armies systematically sought to mitigate cultural loss.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “This intriguing story, told largely through letters written by the rescuers and now in various government archives, will appeal to many general and military history readers.”

    Library Journal

  • “This book recounts how a small group of art historians and restorers, curators, and archivists sought to save art treasures during WWII. It reads more like an adventure novel than a mere retelling of history, especially after the unit’s mission changes from preserving treasures from bombing to recovering looted artwork. And that’s the tone that reader Jeremy Davidson delivers. He varies the pacing effectively, based on the nature of the text. He speeds up slightly during exciting action-filled sequences. He reads letters and documents with a flatter tone, making it easy for listeners to discern when the document stops and the author’s words resume. He also gives a slight but not intrusive or cartoonish British accent to quotations by Britishers.

    AudioFile

  • A #1 New York Times Bestseller
  • A Library Journal Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Josh | 2/19/2014

    " 3.5 stars. A great micro story of ww2. The assiduous work of french rose valland and Jacque jaujard in impossible times during the war is worth the read. The coincidences of Harry eitlengers life amongst the chaos of war is alone a movie. His family flees from Europe only for him to come back as a monument man and recover his and many other families stolen art pieces. The success of some of the noteable monument men after the war is impressive. If you've been to a museum in Europe you should thank these guys for the walls not missing so many cultural treasures. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kensingtonpalace | 2/13/2014

    " Fantastic and moving book, clearly describing a little-known but important story. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Bookchurn | 2/5/2014

    " A fantastic read about preserving art in the middle of war. I never thought of this before and was astonished by the lengths gone to by individuals to steal or preserve priceless art in the midst of chaos. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Carolyn Crocker | 2/2/2014

    " This ambitious book may attempt too much--setting too many characters on both sides, complicated maneuvers and tricky bureaucratic brinksmanship against a backdrop of raging battles and falling cities. But it captures the chaos of war, the dedication of those tasked with preserving the world's cultural heritage, and the singleminded rapacity of the enemy. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Christopherseelie | 1/30/2014

    " A novelized history book that glorifies the hard work and dedication of several art history scholars to document/save/return works of art displaced or destroyed by world war two. It is a unique historical moment and the author does well in letting the importance appear rather than asserting it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Deborah | 1/16/2014

    " My husband read this book and told me about it as he was reading it. It is the true story of a group of men who were charged with protecting, recovering, and restoring, as best they could, the architecture and art of Europe during and after WWII. The looting and destruction of art and architecture robs a people of their culture, so the Nazis purposefully set out to destroy the works of those peoples they felt were inferior (Poles, Jews, etc.). Goering and Hitler were obsessed with obtaining as much as they could; Goering for himself and Hitler for himself and a gallery he wanted to furnish after the war. The personal stories of the men who were in charge of the mission and the obstacles they faced made an intriguing tale. Having been to many of the sites and having seen the works described made the book more of a delight to me. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Kc | 1/13/2014

    " Sometimes slow going but very interesting look at the efforts to preserve great works of art during WWII. It really makes you stop and think about an entirely different kind of wartime atrocity - the looting and/or destroying of cultural artifacts (think looting of Iraq museums). "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Julie | 1/9/2014

    " long but very interesting true story of the few soldiers with even fewer resources who were assigned the task of protecting Europe's art treasures at the end of WWII. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Diane Berry | 10/30/2013

    " Well researched, but moves quite slowly. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Aileen | 6/27/2013

    " The book is interesting but repeats. It gives a reality check on the perils of war and culture but also how WWII was very harsh for the European community. The last winter of the war was cold and to be in a war as well must have been hell frozen over. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Janet | 5/21/2013

    " Great combination of art and history. A story completely unknown to me prior to reading this. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Shawn Reynolds | 3/31/2013

    " Damn Nazis "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Jamey Ann | 1/26/2013

    " Fantastic book! anybody interested in art or World War II history must read. We all owe these mken a dept of gratitude for saving so much of the worlds cultural treasures. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Matthew Dixon | 1/17/2013

    " An amazing story of a small number of allied troops whose mission was to recover are plundered by the nazis. Definitely slow at times and gets slightly technical about art conservation (a subject i know little or nothing about), but I was just fascinated by it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carolyn | 7/20/2012

    " Fascinating! WWII from a different angle. Also interesting statements/quotes about why art is important. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nikki | 2/23/2012

    " I really liked this book, it was like reading an Indian Jones adventure. I really admire the Men in this book that were so dedicated to saving and preserving the great Art Treasures of Europe. I would encourage everyone to read this book, it is a very important part of history. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jae | 2/11/2012

    " Great book, but not quite Beautiful Loot so it did not get 5 stars "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Reade | 2/9/2012

    " Very detailed and Interesting. Not exactly a page turner since it is mainly a statement of facts. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Camille | 12/29/2011

    " Fascinating read. Well told story of the men and women who worked to protect and restore Europe' art treasures and buildings during WWII. Harrowing stories of art rescued in the nick of time and other works that did not survive. Excellent audiobook. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Elizabeth | 12/8/2011

    " Fascinating read; I really enjoyed it. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Joel | 11/18/2011

    " those fuckin' nazis. I didn't realize the scale of what they stole and Hitler's insane orders to destroy everything as the war was being lost. Fascinating story, and so pathetic that we learned nothing from it and totally screwed up protecting cultural treasures in Iraq "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Krista | 10/1/2011

    " AN EYEOPENER FOR ME EVEN THOUGH I HAVE READ SO MUCH ABOUT WORLD WAR II. LOVED IT. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 4ZZZ | 9/19/2011

    " There is a superb book in there somewhere. It was not the subject as such, the subject is riveting, but the way it is presented. Almost like reading a novel at times. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jae | 5/17/2011

    " Great book, but not quite Beautiful Loot so it did not get 5 stars "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Laurie | 4/26/2011

    " Amazing adventure by a very special group.
    Very worth reading. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Judy | 11/1/2010

    " This book covered a subject that I was only tangentially acquainted with. The author made the history come alive and made the men who "found" the hidden art treasures appropriated by the Nazis seem very real and very alive. An easy, interesting read. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Robin | 8/23/2010

    " I really enjoyed learning about an aspect of WWII that I was completely unaware of. It really emphasizes the total devastation that Hitler was about to perpetrate on humanity. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Sean | 8/5/2010

    " It was very good and historically accurate, however I thought it was going to be about something else than what it was. So I'll give this one 3 stars. :) "

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About the Author

Robert M. Edsel is the author of the New York times bestseller The Monuments Men and Rescuing da Vinci and co-producer of the award-winning documentary film The Rape of Europa. He is also the founder and president of the Monuments Men Foundation, a recipient of the National Humanities Medal, and a trustee at the National WWII Museum. After living in Florence for five years, he now resides in Dallas, Texas.

About the Narrators

Jenna Lamia is an actress and award-winning audiobook narrator. She has won the prestigious Audie Award, as well as more than a dozen AudioFile Earphones Awards. Her acting credits include appearances on Oz, Law & Order: SVU, and NYPD Blue. She has attended Amherst College, New York University, and the Sorbonne in Paris.

Jeremy Davidson played the role of Master Sergeant Chase Moran for five seasons in the television series Army Wives, and has guest-starred on numerous shows, including Brothers & SistersCold CaseWithout a Trace, and Boston Legal. He has appeared extensively onstage, including opposite John Goodman and Brenda Fricker in the Geffen Playhouse production of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof. An Earphones Award–winning narrator, he has also given voice to a number of bestselling audiobooks.