I’ve got a mostly spoiler-free review of this 800 page monster, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. Yes I read an adult novel and I enjoyed it! Now let’s dive into it…
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
Series: Outlander (#1)
Genres: Historical fiction, Romance
Publication: June 1st 1991 by Dell Publishing Company
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.
I got through this faster than I thought I would. Despite some problematic scenes, I enjoyed most of the book. It wasn’t as graphic as the impression I got from a lot of readers and I’m pleased about that. My thoughts on this book and the characters in particular may be unconsciously influenced by the TV show adaptation as I have watched the first season of it and those thoughts may merge with my experience reading this novel.
Nonetheless, this was a truly emotional read with the many close encounters of torture, assault, rape and a whole lot of violence. I know this turned a lot of people off the book but I believe it helped illustrate the harshness of Claire’s situation. However, it did get to a point where it was a tad too much and its prevalence became repetitive.