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Tears of the Jaguar by [Hartley, A.J.]
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Tears of the Jaguar Kindle Edition

3.9 out of 5 stars 199 customer reviews

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Length: 465 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Hartley, whose thrillers usually contain an element of historical mystery, brings back museum curator Deborah Miller, this time sending her to Ek Balam, site of a Mayan pyramid, where she begins a globe-trotting quest to find the truth about ancient rubies rumored to possess magical properties. Rich in history and adventure, the book should appeal to fans of the author’s previous novels as well as genre fans who can’t get their fill of ancient mysteries. The prose is a little raw in places, but it would take a lot of work to let that dampen one’s enjoyment of the book, and the writing is definitely way more reader-friendly than, say, Dan Brown’s too-often clunky prose. And Miller is such a strong, likable protagonist that it’s hard to take our eyes off her long enough to notice any stylistic flaws. --David Pitt

About the Author

A. J. Hartley is a native of Lancashire, England, and was born near the town where the witch trials featured in Tears of the Jaguar occurred four hundred years ago. He lived in Japan for several years and traveled extensively throughout southern and eastern Asia before moving to the United States for graduate school. After earning his Ph.D. from Boston University, he taught college-level Shakespeare in Georgia and North Carolina. Today he works as a dramaturg, director, theater historian, and theorist in Renaissance drama at UNC-Charlotte, where he holds the Robinson Chair of Shakespeare Studies. He has written fiction for twenty years and is the author of Macbeth, a Novel with David Hewson, Darwen Arkwright and the Peregrine Pact, Act of Will, Will Power, The Mask of Atreus, On the Fifth Day, and What Time Devours.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2974 KB
  • Print Length: 465 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas & Mercer (September 4, 2012)
  • Publication Date: September 4, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007CJUA84
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
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  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #229,042 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Jason Golomb VINE VOICE on August 28, 2012
Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
"Tears of the Jaguar" is a decent archaeological thriller. It suffers from what many similar novels face: too much circling around multi-threaded plot points to give any of the sub-plots, and more importantly any of the characters, real depth and development.

I enjoyed the core mystery that starts at an archaeological dig in the Yucatan, swings across the pond to England, before heading back to Mexico. Archaeologists discover a previously hidden chamber beneath a reconstructed pyramid at Ek Balam (a real site that's not far from Chichen Itza). Certain objects are discovered and then stolen...and off goes our plot to uncover who took the items, why, and what the items actually are.

In the early chapters, author A.J. Hartley shows flashes of real character insight, but too quickly does he turn to cliche and jaded story elements. The characters that are jerks, start off jerky and end jerky. The conflicted protagonist starts off kind of confused and wishy-washy and doesn't progress much throughout the story. The distinct components that give a character life are all there. It's just that there's no subtly in their introduction, and no real growth or change in the qualities by the end of the book.

Hartley does return a few times to themes tied to cultural heritage. Laws protect archaeological discoveries on behalf of the country in which they are found, not the finder. But what does a poor rural Maya care whether a find is protected for his country... especially when an object can be sold for many times ones annual wage. Likewise, Hartley touches on cultural bias as one Hispanic Mexican opines on his own bigoted perspective of the Maya Mexicans who live near the dig at Ek Balam.
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Format: MP3 CD
Tears of the Jaguar by A.J. Hartley is a thriller is the most mundane sense of the word. Sure there are action sequences that keep you reading, but there just seems to be missing something (which I'll get into a little bit later).

The story revolves around Deborah Miller, the site supervisor at a Mayan archeological dig, and delves into the point of view of almost every character in the book at some point, even a cabby at one point. The action starts after a huge storm hits the site and opens up an underground cavern where the dig team discovers jewels, bones, and other grave goods.

After the discovery, it seems like all hell breaks loose. Everyone and their mother are interested in the rubies that were discovered. The tomb gets robbed, there are all sorts of nefarious characters running amok, and then Eustachio, the dig site's foreman gets killed in a ritualistic and bloody manner. It's after the robbery that things just totally start going haywire. There's so much going on, which is usually a good thing.If you throw lots of clues at your readers, and you leave them guessing. Unfortunately, for Tears, not a single one of these possibilities are just red herrings. Some of the suspicious parties involved are crooked archeologists, CIA, MI5, gun runners, distraught parents, a sociopath, a poor graduate student who just wants to get laid, and of course, Deborah--the only person who's just interested in the story and finding out the truth behind the rubies and the bones.

So what's missing? Discretion, focus, and cohesion. The story line is everywhere.
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
Without a doubt, TEARS OF THE JAGUAR has got to be one of the best books I have read of late. From the get-go, it sucked me and and I had a really hard time putting it down.

A fast-paced page turner that leads off in directions I never would have imagined. And the best part is, it all made sense! With so many twists and turns and apparently unrelated things, I was beginning to wonder how it was all going to tie together, but author A.J. Hartley does a wonderful job of logically tying up all the loose ends.

Well-developed characters, running the gambit from truly likable to sleazy bad-guys--all of them easy to imagine and very believable. Excellent, realistic dialogue. Well-described and easy to picture locations and backdrops.

430 pages whizzed by so fast, that I managed to read the entire book in about 10 hours total reading time. As I said, I didn't want to put it down--doing so only because I had to get some sleep AND go to work!

Lots of action and adventure, mystery and suspense, twists and turns. If there was any profanity (I don't think there was), I never noticed it. I REALLY LIKED THIS BOOK!

An easy to give FIVE STAR rating for TEARS OF THE JAGUAR. If you're looking for an exciting, well-written, action-adventure yarn with realistic characters and a good dose of mystery thrown in, I'm sure you'll enjoy this book as much as I did!
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Format: Paperback Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I initially was attracted by this book's use of the Maya ruins of Ek Balam. I am an author who frequently uses historical settings/elements myself, although I write supernatural (often what is termed Lovecraftian) fiction. I rarely read mysteries, but I'm glad I read this one.

The story is not confined to the Maya setting, but extends to Great Britain and the monarchy in the 1600s, then on to tales of the Lancashire witches! The author combines several disparate historical accounts, blending them together smoothly to create an excellent narrative full of unexpected twists and surprises.

It is very difficult to intertwine historical facts with imaginative fiction, as I know first hand. Authors often dwell far too long on the historical background, which can bog down the narrative. Mr. Hartley doesn't do that here. He uses the historical accounts to enhance the imaginative elements of the story and help keep things rolling at a good pace. I read the over-400-page book in just four nights as the story kept me guessing and eager to find out what would happen next.

I recommend this book highly!
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