Das Mona-Lisa-Virus (The Mona Lisa Virus)

Das Mona-Lisa-Virus
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Bastei Entertainment
March 21st 2016
August 7, 2019 August 10, 2019

In Milan "The Last Supper" by Leonardo Da Vinci is destroyed. In Mexico a group of models is kidnapped and tortured: when the girls reappear, their faces are brutally disfigured by what appear to be real surgical operations. At the same time, a computer virus is spreading all over the world, which systematically alters photo files. Is there a connection between these events? Helen Morgan - a Boston scientist - will shed light on the story. When in fact her daughter is kidnapped, the woman begins to follow a track that takes her to Europe, and exactly to the Louvre, where the picture of the Mona Lisa seems to be in danger. But the reasons for all this sink into the past, around 1500, when the famous painting saw the light ...

About the book

This book talks about art, beauty and stereotypes that nowadays have become a little too forced. Or at least that’s the underlying message that the killer gives. The characters are American but we travel around the world with Mexico, France, Italy and some other European countries. The protagonist is a scientist who studies the psychology behind beauty. What happens in our brain when we look at a piece of art? This is what she tries to explain, but this will bring her into the clutches of a conspirator.

Meanwhile some Miss America are kidnapped in Mexico and one by one they are disfigured to eliminate all their beauty. A computer virus is spread all over the world, a program that disfigures the photos and images of people and makes them ugly. But what is this concept of beautiful or ugly? Who dictated the canons of beauty?

I don’t remember why I bought this book, maybe the fact that there was the famous Mona Lisa in the title or her image on the cover, the fact is that I didn’t know the author but I bought it anyway. The case is nice, complicated, I like the beginning with the various cases that seem to be separated. It’s a little slow. Nevertheless I like the style. Short chapters dedicated to a case and set in a specific city.

I don’t understand why many foreign authors take it out on Italian art. Isle of the Dead takes it out on Caravaggio, The Mona Lisa virus on Leonardo… Even here they blow up the Ambrosian Museum… I know it’s just fiction, but don’t they have any painters or artists to destroy their art?

Having said that, my vote of 3 stars is not because of that. Everything was very slow so I found it a bit boring. But (and for this 3 and not 1 or 2) I like the beginning, the fact that there are many cases and that I didn’t immediately understand the connection kept me glued to the pages up to the middle. After that it became slow. And honestly I don’t like the “case” of the past, I don’t find it interesting. I know it all comes from there, but I find it useless.

Despite this I recommend it, it is not an easy read because as said at the beginning it seems that the chapters don’t have a logical thread, but it isn’t bad, just a little slow for my taste.

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