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Reviewed by Deborah Lloyd for Readers' Favorite
Goya’s Ring and the Naked Maja Dancing by Richard L. Katz covers all the bases for an interesting read. Begin with a long-lost priceless painting, add the dedication of an adventurous art historian, Nazi confiscation of valuable art, cultural and religious diversity, world travels – many intriguing aspects rolled into one story. The art historian and museum curator is Alessandra Santana, a beautiful Spanish woman who is committed to finding this painting, no matter what it takes. This commitment leads to adventurous and dangerous forays. Several other main characters complete the cast, and the reader is never sure who is working with or against Ms. Santana. After many surprising twists and turns in the story, the truth is eventually revealed.
One of the best aspects of this book is the seamless interweaving of so many different areas of interest. Richard L. Katz was truly creative in tying all these aspects together in this novel. It seemed as if he took 500 pieces of a jigsaw puzzle and put it all together – perfectly! There is a considerable amount of historical information about the ongoing effects of the Nazi regime, mostly told through the experiences of a woman who survived the Holocaust as a little child. Katz’s writing style is concise and clear, easily engaging the reader. The development of all the characters is simply brilliant. It is truly a pleasure to read an adventurous, historical novel and not be able to stop reading until you get to the last page – the very definition of a true page-turner!