Brey, Ilaria Dagnini. The Venus fixers: the remarkable story of the Allied soldiers who saved Italy’s art during World War II. New York: Farrar, Straus, and Giroux, 2009
This book focuses on the efforts of the Monuments, Fine Arts, and Archives (MFAA) unit in Italy to protect Italy's cultural heritage from Nazi destruction. The title is derived from the nickname given to the mostly older and intellectual group MFAA members by other GIs. The book describes the entire Italian campaign of recovery, protection and post war restoration efforts. The city of Florence gets special attention due to its important position in the history of Western culture. Brey describes the key role that members of the Italian resistance played in protecting Florentine monuments and artwork from the Germans as well as unintentional destruction caused by Aliied bombing, such as the abbey of Monte Cassino.
Edsel, Robert M. Saving Italy: the race to rescue a nation’s treasures from the Nazis. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, c2013.
Edsel’s follow up to The Monuments Men focuses on the MFAA in Italy. He writes primarily about two individuals: artist Deane Keller and art historian Frederick Hartt and their role in preserving Italy’s treasures for posterity. The author recognizes the important role members of the Italian Resistance played in protecting their heritage from the Germans, especially after the Italian surrender to the Allies. Italian museum and cultural officials defied the orders of Mussolini by moving works of art in storage away from the Germans and to safer storage sites, including some under the protection of the Vatican. Edsel also describes the post-war return of art into Italy. One of the highlights of the book is his description of the return of Florentine treasures and the reopening of the Uffizi in 1946. The ties that Keller and Hartt formed with Italy proved lasting. Both helped Florence recover after the devastating 1966 flood.