Small Sacrifices: A True Story of Passion and Murder

( 86 )

Overview


Ann Rule's shocking and powerful account of the destructive forces that drove Diane Downs, a beautiful young mother, to shoot her three young children in cold blood.
Read More Show Less
... See more details below
Paperback (Mass Market Paperback - Reissue)
$7.99
BN.com price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (81) from $1.99   
  • New (8) from $4.40   
  • Used (73) from $1.99   
Small Sacrifices

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • Samsung Galaxy Tab 4 NOOK
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$7.99
BN.com price

Overview


Ann Rule's shocking and powerful account of the destructive forces that drove Diane Downs, a beautiful young mother, to shoot her three young children in cold blood.
Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This searching analysis of the shooting of three children in Oregon by their mother devolves into a study of personality. In May of 1983, Diane Downs drove to a Williamette Valley hospital emergency room with her children, all gravely wounded; one did not survive the first hour, and the other two were disabled for life. Downs initially told of a ``bushy-haired stranger'' who had committed the crime, but frequently changed her story. Under police questioning she recalled her childhood with a cold, domineering father who abused her sexually, her weak mother, a rape by one of her bosses, her failed marriage and many men with whom she had sex. One of these men, whom she claimed to love, did not want children, and that may have prompted the crime, speculates the author. The greatest strength of this book is the exploration by ex-policewoman Rule (The Stranger Beside Me of the aberrant personality of Downs, who is now imprisoned and not eligible for parole until 2009. (May 27)
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780451166609
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
  • Publication date: 7/5/1988
  • Format: Mass Market Paperback
  • Edition description: Reissue
  • Pages: 496
  • Sales rank: 122,260
  • Product dimensions: 4.22 (w) x 6.84 (h) x 1.11 (d)

Meet the Author

Ann  Rule

Ann Rule has drawn on her experience as a former policewoman to become one of America’s top true-crime writers. The author of over 1,000 articles and numerous books, she has lectured widely to law-enforcement schools and agencies. She has also serves as a consultant to the FBI’s Violent Criminal Apprehension Program (VI-CAP), which is used to track and apprehend violent criminals. Her bestselling books, Lust Killer, The Want-Ad Killer, The I-5 Killer, and Small Sacrifices, are available in Signet editions.

Biography

Ann Rule has always had an insatiable interest in why people do the things they do. From devouring true crime books when she was a girl to pursuing a career in law enforcement as a Seattle policewoman, to achieving blockbuster success as a true crime author, Rule has dedicated her life to uncovering the dark motivations inside the minds of the criminals who live among us.

The majority of Rule's books have hit the New York Times bestseller list, including six Crime Files series volumes: A Rage to Kill, In the Name of Love, the #1 bestseller A Fever in the Heart, You Belong to Me, A Rose for Her Grave, and The End of the Dream.

...And Never Let Her Go is her chilling account of the nationally renowned case of wife killer Thomas Capano; Bitter Harvest covers the case of Debora Green, a physician and mother driven to murder; the #1 bestseller If You Really Loved Me tells the true story of a millionaire's murderous alter ego; Everything She Ever Wanted is the story of a sociopathic Georgia socialite and her fatal attractions; Small Sacrifices is Rule's heartbreaking account of a woman who slaughtered her three young children. Perhaps her best-known and most compelling work, The Stranger Beside Me, is the fascinating tale of Rule's growing terror as she realized her friend and coworker, Ted Bundy, was a serial killer. Finally, the #1 New York Times bestseller Dead by Sunset tells the story of a charismatic killer and the women who loved him.

Generous and civic-minded when it comes to sharing her expertise and insights, Rule has testified before the U.S. Senate Judiciary Subcommittee and often speaks to law enforcement agencies, including the FBI Academy. She also served on the U.S. Justice Department task force that set up VI-CAP -- the Violent Criminal Apprehension Program now in use at the FBI to trace and apprehend serial killers.

Good To Know

Rule's early jobs included being a caseworker for the Washington State Department of Public Assistance and a police officer.

Rule's interest in criminology seems to run in the family: Her grandfather and an uncle were sheriffs, another uncle was a medical examiner, and her cousin was a district attorney.

Read More Show Less
    1. Hometown:
      Seattle, Washington
    1. Date of Birth:
      October 22, 1935
    2. Place of Birth:
      Lowell, Michigan
    1. Education:
      Creative Writing Program, University of Washington

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4.5
( 86 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(66)

4 Star

(10)

3 Star

(5)

2 Star

(1)

1 Star

(4)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 86 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2006

    Accurate and mesmerizing account of a terrible tragedy

    I worked for the court during the Diane Downs trial, and was very skeptical when I learned that Ann Rule was attending the trial to write a book about it. For me, the experience of working on the trial was life-changing, shaking my cozy view of the world. I have to admit, however, that in my experience of the trial and how events unfolded, the book is amazingly accurate. It even shed some light on why Downs was driven to murdering her own children. It is utterly compelling. A mesmerizing read. Probably Rule's best book.

    17 out of 17 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2005

    Excellent Book!!

    This book is so well written. So very interesting. Facts are very sad but true. Ann Rule really hits the spot.

    9 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2006

    You ll never forget

    Even though its been over 20 years since this tragic occurance, I still wonder what happened to the two surviving children. How a mother could ever look her children in the eye and point a gun and pull a trigger, is beyond reason. Ann Rule is a fantastic writer.

    8 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 13, 2003

    The book that started it all.

    In my second year of college we were required to purchase and read this book for a social sciences class I was enrolled in. I had never before been truly interested in 'True Crime' but from the moment that I began reading this book I couldn't put it down. That was over 7 years ago. Since that time I have read many books in this genre and have yet to be as emotionally involved as I was in this book. It's a heartbreaking story that will make you cry for the children and wonder how a woman, a mother could be so callous. By the end of the book there wasn't a fiber in my being that didn't wish the same fate upon Diane.

    7 out of 7 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 19, 2006

    Small sacrifices By Ann Rule

    This was a excellent Book !! I am a Law Enforcement Officer, and my Crime Scene Investigation Instructor James Pex was the Lead Criminalist on this case. He did a incrediable job of reconstructing this crime scene in Court. His work ultimatly lead to the sucessful conviction of Diane Downs. If you look close at all the sketch's Diane Downs had drawn by the sketch artist, You will see the sketches look almost just like her. The Oregon State Crime Lab and Jim Pex did so much work on this case, and noone could put it into words better than Ann Rule. Her Books are the Most accurate recounts of Police investigations you could ever read. Her books just are hard to put down once you start reading them. Special Thanks to Jim Pex for putting Diane Downs where she belongs.

    5 out of 6 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 12, 2004

    ONE YOU'LL NEVER FORGET

    I bought this took in 1988 when it first came out and read it. Six months later, you couldn't buy this book anywhere; people were buying them up so quick. I had to pass my copy around to six people to read because they couldn't buy it anywhere. That says a lot for this story, which took the nation by storm. Diane Downes became a household name at that time, was on TV shows via satellite from prison, and a movie was made of this story. It is hard to say this was a good book because of the suffering of Diane's two surviving children and the death of her middle daughter, but if you like true crime and Ann Rule books, this is a must read. You'll never forget it. It's a hell of a story.

    4 out of 4 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 29, 2012

    Ann Rules again!

    I too read this book years ago. I couldn't find a copy (all book stores were sold out) so my friend allowed me to read her copy of this book. I'm so pleased to purchase a copy for my nook. This is a really good book and Ms. Rules has captured not only the emotions but the desperation that was brought out during the trial. I assure you... you'll love this book.

    Also, about the seller "Deans Books" I too had a problem with a purchase. I purchased a book and the book I received was by a different author with no conection to the book I selected. If you buy a book from them you really take a chance.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 18, 2012

    Heartwrenching - Unbelievable

    This book was exceptionally well written. It delved into the mind of Diane Downs in a way that made her very easy to understand. I've often wondered how the two children who survived the tragedy inflicted on them by their mother are doing. I was so glad to hear that they had been taken in by a family who cared about them and weren't afraid of dealing with their disabilities. This book brings home the truth that some women will actually abandon or even go so far as to kill their children in order to be with a man they profess to love. I high recommend this book and any other books by Ann Rule to anyone who enjoys true crime books.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted May 11, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    I Also Recommend:

    An Extraordinary yet Horrifying Tale of Murder

    Ann Rule is by far the BEST true crime writer that I have come by. "Small Sacrifices" tells the horrifying story of a mother who will do anything, even shoot her 3 children in cold blood for the love of 1 man. This novel details the journey of Diane Downs life, and what possesed her to viciously kill and wound her 3 children on a dark night in the middle of nowehere.

    This is a MUST READ for all fans of the true crime genre, and Ann Rule. It is a page turner from beginning to end. Pick up this book!

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted March 13, 2011

    Excellent

    I read this book years ago and it started me reading all of Ann Rule's books. I could not put this book down. This book also taught me about the personality disorders and had me doing more research. My mother and daughter read the book and loved it. I highly recommend this book.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted March 16, 2009

    I Also Recommend:

    Another great Ann Rule book!

    This is a book I read many years ago but wanted to read it again. I couldn't put it down. Ann Rule has a way of writing that keeps you so engrossed in the book you can't wait to get to each new chapter. While reading it dawned on me that a lot of things about Diane Downs are similar to the Casey Anthony case. She was just all about her. She shot her 3 children. One died, the other two were left with problems for life. She Had a crazy story like Casey too. It was the shaggy haired stranger.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2004

    Another Ann Rule Blockbuster

    As always, Ann has captured the true character of her subject. I could not put this book down, like most of her true crime books. However, this book filled my heart with sadness to think that a mother could do such a horrible thing to the children she should have protected with her own life!

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 30, 2004

    Awesome.........

    Great book. Hard to put down. Felt so sorry for those children.

    2 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 29, 2003

    One Great Book!!

    From the start of this book i was hooked.. i couldnt put it down. Its so disturbing how a mother could shoot her 3 kids.. in cold blood. I loved the book so much i didnt want it to end! I cried for the kids,,,Hated the mother... Admired the detectives and was truely touched by the novel. I dont usually enjoy reading unless its a really good book, and all i can say is that if your looking for a good long book read Small Sacrifices.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted January 11, 2013

    A Very Compelling Book

    This is a very interesting and compelling book, well written, as usual, by Ann Rule. She gives the facts about this horrific crime and makes it difficult to put down. I highly recommend it.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 10, 2013

    Best book

    This is by far the most well written book, i love the way Ann Rule told this awful story about a monster who called herself a mother .. my heart goes to these children to have your own mother treat you the way Diane did and then shoot these innocent lil angels .. Diane deserves everything she got and God please never let her out of prison.. thank you everyone involved to bring this monster in including her own daughter, i was in tears when i read about this little girl up on the stand at her mothers trial, the emotions she must of felt, so brave....this is a must read....Bn

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted December 13, 2012

    My first is still the best!

    This book was my first True Crime book, I read it when I was 14 and never forgot it. Since then, I have read so many, this remained my fave. I was thrilled to see it in NOOK so I re-read it right away. 24 years later, it's just as good and well-written in my adult opinion and Ann Rule is still my favorite TC writer. I was also pleasantly surprised to find the photos. More NOOK books, please.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted October 24, 2012

    Highly Recommended - if you love true crime

    This is the first time I read Small Sacrifices. Debated on whether or not I should read this one because it had small children involved but it was really good. Ann Rule is an exceptional true crime write. I felt so many emotions while reading this but. Truly a must read.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Posted February 23, 2010

    Ann Rule Does it Again!

    This is only my second book that I have read by Ann Rule and I am hooked! Ann Rule did a great job in following the life of Diane Downs and what drove her to shoot her three kids in cold blood. It was a fast moving book. I couldn't put it down. Ann Rule was very detailed and in depth. I don't think she left a piece of information unturned. I definitely recommend this book and this author. I look forward to reading even more from her.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 30, 2007

    untrue

    This conviction was borne out of police corruption, false testimony and bad science. James Pex's findings were discredited by a leading US Forensic expert. Pex himself admitted flaws at a 1991 Hearing. And jurors later admitted to convicting on a Prosecutors blatant lie. Exculpatory evidence was denied by the judge and the Prosecutor adopted the children (who denied many times it was not their mother who shot them) to keep them quiet. It stinks.

    1 out of 9 people found this review helpful.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
See All Sort by: Showing 1 – 20 of 86 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)