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Beautiful Sacrifice Paperback – May 22, 2012

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; 1st Printing edition (May 22, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0061629863
  • ISBN-13: 978-0061629860
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.4 x 1.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (67 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #641,795 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“As Lina and Hunter dodge bullets and trade wisecracks across the Southwest, Lowell (Death Echo) deftly incorporates creepy basement corpse discoveries, sleazy antiquities dealers, crumbling jungle tombs, charmingly sinister relatives, fascinating archeological elements, and a well-realized, completely invented Mayan god.” (Publishers Weekly)

From the Back Cover

According to Maya legend, December 21, 2012, will mark the end of the world as we know it. Is it myth . . . or will their prediction become reality?

Archaeologist Lina Taylor has devoted her life to studying ancient Maya artifacts, splitting her time between digs in South America and the classroom teaching college students. But the professor's structured, academic life is about to spin out of control. Some extremely valuable and important Maya artifacts have gone missing. Are the culprits fanatics determined to create chaos and usher in annihilation?

Helping out a friend, former immigration and customs enforcement officer Hunter Johnston is determined to recover the missing pieces and he needs Lina's help. A man used to calling the shots and working alone, he isn't comfortable letting anyone get close, especially a beautiful and brainy woman like Lina. His gift for reading people tells him there's a lot going on below that professional exterior, and he's more than a little curious to probe her depths.

Burying herself in her work, Lina's had little experience handling men, especially one as fascinating and exasperating as the secretive, headstrong Hunter. A devoted archaeologist, she has the skill to excavate those protective layers all the way to his core.

But finding the missing artifacts is only the beginning of a mystery that will plunge these unlikely partners into adventure, romance, and danger more thrilling, sensual, and deadly than either of them knows. . . .

More About the Author

NEW YORK TIMES Bestselling author Elizabeth Lowell has numerous historical and contemporary novels in print, including her four-book series of suspense novels featuring the unforgettable Donovan family--AMBER BEACH, JADE ISLAND, PEARL COVE and MIDNIGHT IN RUBY BAYOU. Ms. Lowell's current release, DEATH ECHO, is Book 5 in her St. Kilda Consulting series and features twin yachts, international gangsters, and plenty of romantic-suspense. There are more than thirty million Elizabeth Lowell books currently in print. Ms. Lowell lives in the Pacific Northwest with her husband.

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Customer Reviews

Gave this book a low rating because it did not even read like an E. Lowell book.
Kayla Adams
It does not help that the story or plot is a predictable one, which I wouldn't mind as long as I can read some new twists but no, it's just more and more Mayan facts.
If you've read Elizabeth Lowell before and don't want to be disappointed, skip this one.
Barbara Leonard

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

52 of 54 people found the following review helpful By Bukcrz on May 28, 2012
Format: Paperback
Elizabeth Lowell is one of those authors that, to me, can capture my interest right at the first page of her books. Her books would grab me in and won't let go so they are usually my `all-nighter' books. The fact that it took me more than a week to finish this book since its release says a lot at how hard I had to force myself to finish reading, to make sure my guess at who the bad guy was is right at the first chapters of the book. THAT'S how predictable the story was.
Don't get me wrong, the characters were not bad as individuals especially the main characters. The heroine is a true modern woman with her own job that she both enjoyed and love. She does not take crap from anyone but also has first class manners to boot. That goes without saying that she is beautiful and rich as well.
The hero is your modern day warrior who can survive both in the concrete jungle of cities and of the wild. He has high connections in the government and private and even in the not so legal side of the law. A typical alpha male who is both a gentleman to his lady and a formidable warrior to his enemies.
They sound great, right? And honestly they are main characters I would pay to read. Unfortunately, the whole story is 95% dedicated to Mayan facts, legends, history, and cults that the romance between the main characters did not have a chance to be explored. They get to know each other by how much they know about Mayan facts, their conversation is 98% Mayan tidbits, and hunt more Mayan artifacts on their `dates' and talks to dealers both shadowy and not. It's not that I did not want to be educated about Mayans but if I want that I will pick up text book, not a romance book.
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30 of 30 people found the following review helpful By Sharon on May 30, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have been a huge fan of Lowell for years, and have read everything she's written as Ann Maxwell, AE Maxwell, and Elizabeth Lowell. I pre-ordered this book as soon as I saw it, and couldn't wait to read it. What a disappointment! The Mayan information overwhelms all other parts of the story. The romance between the main characters seems an afterthought, added to a textbook on Mayan customs and civilization.

From the spunky heroine's first class lecture, we know the end of the world is coming and it's customary for the priest-king to sacrifice something precious and valuable to the blood-thirsty god. From about 25% into the book, we know why the bad guys want our heroine, what they plan to do to her (HINT read the book title)and when. The only remaining question is who the main bad guy is. At the start of the book, there are three possible evil-doers. About one-third of the way into the story, we discover that the priest-king must have royal blood. Okay, that eliminates two possible bad guys, making the rest of the book entirely predictable. You'd think, as intelligent and knowledgeable about Mayan customs as our heroine is, that she too could have figured out why she's being chased. Had she done so, she could have spent quality time with the alpha male hero at a ski resort in northern Maine or somewhere distant from the threat. Does she do that? of course not: they both head for the Yucatan, home of the Mayan civilization, so that she'll be close by for easy kidnapping and the big finale. It's all poorly plotted, and disappointingly silly.

The alpha male hero is also confusing: he becomes involved in the story because his best friend has been wrongly accused and he is determined to clear his best friend's name.
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25 of 28 people found the following review helpful By Laurel A. Sorensen on May 30, 2012
Format: Paperback
I have been reading Elizabeth Lowell since her Loveswept days, and she was for years, an autobuy. Then she got away from any romance in her books (given that they are supposed to be romantic suspense, that's part of what you should be able to reasonably expect from the book). In this book, she goes back to having some fairly hot romance, and it ALMOST got me to finish the book. But....the research/droning on and on AND ON..... about the Mayan history was sooooo boring. I'm sorry..I'd rather reread any of the books she wrote 20 years ago (for the 10+ time, than finish this book.
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Ann de Vries on June 5, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I am glad I got "Beautiful Sacrifice" by Elizabeth Lowell from the library, because I would have hated to waste my money on it. My husband and I are both fans of Elizabeth Lowell; we have most of her books in paper and have started replacing them with eBooks when the price is good. She has written a few books we didn't like, however, and this is one.

Both the hero and the heroine were flat, one-dimensional and unmemorable. Neither one of them was especially charismatic or even very likeable. They didn't strike sparks off one another and there wasn't much romance between them.

There were holes and weaknesses in the plot. For example, the hero is "blackmailing" the heroine into helping him with the search for missing Mayan artefacts, and she "helps" because she needs to preserve her reputation as a scholar and curator. This was used to set up tension and conflict between the heroine and hero and it was a key point. The problem is that initially, he only showed her some photos and asked what she could tell him about the Mayan artefacts pictured, because he was an adult student in one of her classes on the Mayans. So what if her family had questionable reputations in handling artefacts? At this point in the story, there was no indication of any connection between the artefacts and her family. This sort of thing--too many coincidences and senseless actions--was evident throughout the book, and it made it impossible to suspend disbelief and get engrossed in the plot.

There was way too much dull, didactic filler on the Mayan civilisation, its interaction with Europeans, and the potential 2012 apocalypse. I love history, so when I say 'dull and didactic', it is not because the subject matter does not interest me, but because it is my commentary on the writing style.
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