“Paints a vivid picture of the era and the effects Hitler’s interest in art had on both artists and Europe in general . . . a new take on Nazi Germany.” —Kirkus Reviews
Winner of The Hollywood Film Festival’s Opus Magnum Discovery Award
Winner of the IPPY gold medal for Best Literary Fiction 2014
An accidental spy, Julian Klein, an idealistic American artist, leaves his religious upbringing for the artistic freedom of Paris in the early 1930s. Once he arrives in the “City of Light,” he meets a young German artist, Felix von Bredow, whose larger-than-life personality overshadows his inferior artistic ability, and the handsome and gifted artist Rene Levi, whose colossal talent will later serve to destroy him. The trio quickly becomes best friends, inseparable, until two women get in the way—Rene’s girlfriend with whom Julian secretly falls in love, and a stunning artist’s model who manages to bring great men to their knees.
Artistic and romantic jealousies abound, as the characters play out their passions against the backdrop of the Nazis’ rise to power. Felix returns to Berlin, where his father, a blue-blooded Nazi, is instrumental in creating the master plan to destroy Germany’s modern artists, and seeks his son’s help. Bolstered by vengeance, Felix will lure his friends to Germany, an ill-fated move, which will forever change their lives. Twists and turns, destruction and obsession, loss and hope will keep you up at night, as you journey from Chicago to Paris, Berlin to New York. Believe Booklist when it raves, “Masterfully conceived and crafted, Barr’s dazzling debut novel has it all: passion and jealousy, intrigue and danger.”