Author: Diana Gabaldon
Published: 1991 Pages: 850 (or a bajillion epages)
Genre: Fiction (romance with a lowercase r)
Rating: Ignore the whole world until book has been devoured
Outlander in Short: In 1945 Claire Randall walks through a time portal in Scotland transporting her to 1743.
Why I Read It: Because everyone kept saying how amazing it was. Sometimes I’m a sheep.
Thoughts in General: I’m trying to think of a way to ease into my thoughts on Outlander but honestly all I want to tell you is that I was consumed by this book. I finished it a little after Thanksgiving last year and I’m still tempted to start reading it again (yes, rather than begin the second book in the series). It’s not often that I become so obsessed with a story and the characters but I’ve become a total fangirl and have even started occasionally stalking the Starz website for updates on the show. Seriously unlike me…but I know that I’m also not the only one.
How did this happen? It didn’t happen right away. In fact I felt the beginning of the book to be drawn out and a little clunky in terms of the writing and the plot. I almost wished that I had the paper copy of the book because I had a difficult time keeping the details in my head, especially once Claire traveled in time and met Jamie Fraser whose history is a little murky for the first halfish of the book. I kept wondering when I would be swept up in the drama and when the obvious tension between Claire and Jamie would be relieved (note: I knew nothing about this book going in except that there was time travel and a hot Highlander).
But swept away I became and I was able to forgive the details that were sometimes overwrought and the drama that was sometimes eyeroll inducing. Gabaldon created flawed characters that are still fiercely loveable and the action and suspense in the book kept me on the edge of my seat throughout the duration. I admit that she almost lost me near the end and I wish we could have done without certain details (that went on and on ad nauseam), but it has been longer than I can remember when I was stealing away every possible moment to read just a little bit more…just one more page.
Um yes, and there is quite a bit of steaminess in the book. Ahem. That’s all I need to say about that. There’s so so much more–such as the juxtaposition of Claire’s more modern sensibilities and the 18th century view of women. Or even the themes such as the breaking point and redemption of man. Or the choice between one life versus another. The morality of coupling with one man when in another life you are married with another. The history of the Jacobites and the Great Pretender. But blah blah blah who cares give me Jamie and Claire la-di-da.
Bottom Line: This book was like the box of chocolates before a diet. You just have to devour it as quickly as possible so that you can move on. For me it was so that I could get anything done besides reading this book. You know that I don’t gush very often and I’ve only once gushed about a fictional crush, but whatever, I can’t help it. As a note, my mom and sister both read Outlander at the same time I did. My sister also loved it but my mom was a bit lukewarm. I think some people take to it and others don’t. Just like with any book, yes?
Can I leave you with the trailer for the upcoming Starz series? Ok, you’re welcome.