Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

The Details

Publisher: Dell Publishing Compan
Published: June 1st, 1991
Genres: historical fiction, romance
My Rating: 3 Stars

10964 GoodReads Blurb

The year is 1945. Claire Randall, a former combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach—an “outlander”—in a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of Our Lord…1743.

Hurled back in time by forces she cannot understand, Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, and shatter her heart. For here James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, shows her a love so absolute that Claire becomes a woman torn between fidelity and desire—and between two vastly different men in two irreconcilable lives.

My Review

I was not a fan of this book, it wasn’t a bad book, but I didn’t enjoy it. It’s well written and the characters are good. So I can wholly understand why it’s popular and why people enjoy it, but it was not for me.

Honestly, it had a lot of elements that I enjoy. the 1700’s, time travel, strangely attractive people with strange accents and red hair shooting people. However, most of this book had a hurt/comfort element that I wasn’t into. If you are into that kind of story, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this book. It just wasn’t for me.

I wanted to like it because my friend Jen and I were reading it together, and the books she suggests for me to read are usually top notch.

I think my big issue with this was I didn’t understand the time travel theory. Like, did Claire always exist in the past? Was what happened always what happened? Or does Claire traveling back change things, like Marty McFly?  In Doctor Who, which is related to this book, it always seems to me that where the Doctor and his companions go has always happened. The Doctor does not change the future. I’m not going to get into Doctor Who theory. The point being, I don’t which theory of time travel Claire fits in. Does what Claire does through the course of the book change her future? I’m not listening to another 35-hour audiobook or watching a show I’m not going to like since I didn’t like the book to find out.

There were elements of this book that disturbed me greatly, and I had to remember that it was written in 1991 and set in the 1740s. How this book dealt with sexuality and sexual assault really was gross. Rape seems to be a huge theme of the book, and I did not enjoy that at all.  I felt like much of it was done for shock value and I was not a fan. Sexuality also seems to be played for a laugh and for shock value at points. I’ve done a fair amount of research about sexuality in the 1700s, I get it, I understand that men being with men at that time was shocking and something to be made a special of because of religious beliefs, but for me how it’s discussed, especially with the Duke that comes to the castle where the Mackenzies live was a little too much for me.

The love story between Claire and Jamie was fun to listen. If this was a book that focused on that I would have liked it a lot more.

I listened to the audiobook, and I must say the woman who narrated it was really good. I would listen to other books read by her. She did the different accents really well, a very talented woman. I have a hard time understanding Scottish and Irish accents, and I could understand what was being said throughout this whole book.

One thing I must mention that has nothing to do with how I enjoyed the book is that despite being described to look nothing like this, I pictured Black Jack Randal to look like Captian Hook from Disney’s animated Peter Pan the whole time and it gets a bit disturbing there toward the end.

Overall, obviously, this book has an audience. I’m probably in the minority of people who didn’t enjoy the book. I would not tell you not to read it. It’s a well-written book with a compelling plot for the right person.

 

Until Next Time Internet,

Deanna

One thought on “Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

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