Author: Diana Gabaldon
Series: Outlander, Book One
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Read: 9th June 2015
In 1945, Claire Randall is back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon in Scotland. She walks through a stone circle in the Highlands, and finds herself in a violent skirmish taking place in 1743. Suddenly she is a Sassenach, an outlander, in a country ravaged by war and by clan feuds.
Marooned amid the passion and violence, the superstition, the shifting allegiances and the fervent loyalties, Claire is in danger from Jacobites and Redcoats – and from the shock of her own desire for Jamie Fraser, a gallant and courageous young Scots warrior.
Jamie shows her a passion so fierce and 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 loved this book! I read it in three parts, reading a few books in between it because of how big the book is (863 pages!) but I’m really glad that I finished it and I need Dragonfly in Amber as soon as I can find it!
Claire Beauchamp Randal is on her second honeymoon with her husband Frank Randal. Both have just returned from serving in the second world war, Claire from her duties as a nurse and Frank to pursue his love of history. It is 1945 and they’ve travelled to Scotland, where Frank’s ancestor served in the British army in the dragoons. Claire takes up botany while Frank finds all the information he can on his ancestor. It’s during a visit to the preacher’s house that they hear about an ancient ceremony that will take place at the Craigh na Dun rock formation. Both interested, they rise early and go out to the little circle of stones that sits just outside of Inverness and are both blown away by what they see. Interested in the flowers that grow in Craigh na Dun, Claire returns to it by herself later on.
And finds herself landing in 1743. There, she runs into Jonathan Randal, Frank’s ancestor, and mistakes him for Frank for all of two seconds. Rescued by a clansman, Claire takes a few hours to accept her reality. In this time, she is brought to the home of the laird Callum Mackenzie and becomes the castle’s nurse. She also meets the young, tall, handsome red headed Jamie McTavish and becomes friends with him. She constantly misses Frank and longs to return to Craigh na Dun to get back to 1945.
But she is taken with Dougal Mackenzie on the Mackenzie taxes tour and the Mackenzie lands. And after another run in with the infamous Black Jack Randal, Dougal decides to make Claire a Scots woman, by having her marry Jamie. Frustrated and unwilling, Claire gets drunk and is very crabby when getting married. But she finds out that Jamie McTavish is really James Fraser, a man accused of murder with a price on his head. Too late for Claire to back out, she ends up married to him.
It seems that becoming a Scots woman doesn’t exempt her from everything, however, as Claire and Jamie end up in Lallybroch, which is Jamie’s land passed on from his mother, Ellen Mackenzie. Jamie and Claire spend some time there, with Jamie acting as laird of his land once again, until Jamie is captured by the dragoons after one of his tenants reports him to the English. Claire immediately sets out to save Jamie and once she has (and upset Black Jack Randal’s plans in the process), they flee to France where Jamie recovers.
This book draws you in and is definitely worth the read. So much happens that leaves you laughing, hoping, gasping and almost in tears.
If you like strong women, fiery dialogue and a can-do approach, all the while bringing you through Scotland when it was still ruled by clans, you will love this book. You don’t want to put it down once it’s got you in to it. Don’t be daunted by it’s size, it’s well worth the read!
I have given this book a 5/5🌟