Melik Kaylan of, a long-time observer of culture and museums, reviews Rogues’ Gallery — and some of the controversies surrounding it — today. He writes, “Any and all facts that I knew of personally, the author gets absolutely right, which makes me trust much else in the book — and there’s a great deal else, indeed an entire history of the museum beginning from its gradual birth in the 1870s, told as a kind of extended gossip dish, a dense and exhaustively factual one, about the powerful egos that drove it into prominence and kept it there… I didn’t expect to like the book’s tone, but I found a good 100 pages had gone by before I could even put it down… Mistresses, inheritance battles, second and third wives, society scandals, personal feuds among Rockefellers, Morgans, Vanderbilts, Astors and the like abound, rather irritatingly, until one realizes that it’s no artificial gimmick: This is indeed what drove the trustees and directors to excel and outdo each other in contributions of all kinds to the museum… The book is important, and what’s more, splendidly readable. Yet, though published the first week of May, it hasn’t yet received a significant review. It’s worth the price of admission just for the last chapter’s discussion of the future. With the big-moneyed older generation fading without having attracted a younger phalanx of new money into the board of trustees, and with the wider economy tottering, it’s not clear how the Met will bring in fresh funds or keep its place as the world’s preeminent museum. Gross’ book makes us understand how the Met works in reality and, in a stealthy way, makes us care anew about our greatest cultural treasure.”