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Isabella Stewart Gardner: 5 books about the world's most audacious art theft

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2. "Priceless," by Robert K. Wittman

The career of Robert K. Wittman, founder of the FBI's art crime team, may sound glamorous but Wittman's memoir, Priceless: How I Went Undercover to Rescue the World's Stolen Treasures (written with John Shiffman) reveals how often the work was actually enormously frustrating. For readers, however Wittman's book offers a first-rate education on both the Gardner case in particular and art theft in general. "Priceless" begins and ends with the Gardner case, "which Wittman worked on for years, flying tens of thousands of miles and meeting repeatedly with a cast of unsavory and possibly homicidal characters," wrote Monitor reviewer David Kirby in his 2010 review of the book. Unfortunately, he added, the "Gardner case ends with a whimper, not a bang, and certainly not an arrest."

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