The Director of Security and Chief Investigator at Boston's Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum explores the extraordinary life and crimes of heiress-turned-revolutionary Rose Dugdale, who in 1974 became the only woman to pull off a major art heist.
As Amore illustrates with an irresistible blend of wryness and affection, [Rose's] adopted proletarian role was not always convincing or particularly noble ... Amore’s winning detachment is unchanged as Rose evolves from debutante to desperado ... Amore’s publisher has falsely advertised his droll, engaging book as an 'unbelievable' heist story. Ocean’s 8 (or 11, 12, 13) it’s not, Dugdale is more Fawlty than Ocean. Yet this in no way diminishes the pleasures of The Woman Who Stole Vermeer. Rose is terrific company: clever, forthright and flamboyant.
Rich in tantalizing details, The Woman Who Stole Vermeer is filled with personal anecdotes from those who knew Dugdale the best—old college friends, colleagues and political compatriots who all remember her as wholly original and completely fearless ... In striking detail, Amore describes how Dugdale was identified as the one who orchestrated the heist. Her subsequent arrest, theatrical trial and most dramatic crimes are also vividly explained. This exciting biography of a singular woman is for anyone who loves true crime, art, politics and history.
The Woman Who Stole Vermeer, Anthony M. Amore’s engrossing new book, is the first deep dive into the peculiar life of Rose Dugdale, the 33-year-old British heiress with a PhD who, at the time of her arrest, was also wanted for gunrunning, a bombing attempt and armed hijacking... The book clarifies Dugdale’s seriousness and principles, pushing back against the superficial, adventure-seeking socialite label that has paired her erroneously with Patty Hearst.