Monday, July 14, 2008

Book Review: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Pirates. Vampires. Ruthless tycoons. Lately, hot cops. Those have been the men that turn me on fictionally. Never once did a Highlander come into the equation. They wear kilts! As a Catholic schoolgirl, I wore a kilt and it was none too comfortable, let me tell you. I can't fathom wearing one in a balmy Ontario winter, let alone while traipsing across the Scottish moors.

So you can appreciate my level of skepticism when I purchased Diana Gabaldon's Outlander, the first book in the Outlander series. To be fair, I bought it during my brief stint as a bookseller and I was convinced by the cohorts of women who would ask me where the book is kept that it was worth the read.

I can finally say that they were right. Having had a bit of a stressful May and June, I wanted something light and fun to read - I certainly got it.

We meet Claire Beauchamp (my ten years of mandatory French refuses to let me pronounce it "Beach-am" as Gabaldon states in the book), a pragmatic young nurse, on her honeymoon with Frank, in the Scottish Highlands. Having been married for several years already, they haven't had the time to go on a honeymoon due to a little thing called World War II. Frank is a stodgy sort of fellow, a historian by profession, who seems more interested in Scottish history than he is in Claire.

Claire is transported into the strange and unfamiliar world of sixteenth century when she falls through a rocky portal on an ancient hill called Craig na Dun. There she meets a young Scotsman named James Fraser. Fraser is the exact opposite of her twentieth century husband - a clansman by birth, an outlaw by circumstance, he is courageous, swarthy and fills out a kilt like nobody's business. I'm not even a fan of red-haired men, but boy, did I fall in love with Jamie!

Invariably, Claire does as well, which makes this one of the best historical romances I've read. No wonder the series is so popular - Gabaldon infuses the characters with such personality that it's hard not to love them. Claire is a spitfire - smart, funny and handy when you need a shoulder relocated. As I said before, Jamie makes me swoon.

Still, I'm not convinced I'll read the rest of the series. I want to think they will all be as good as the first one, but they never really are, are they? I'm a fan of quality, not quantity, and if that means I have to settle with just a taste of Claire and Jamie, I don't really mind all that much!

1 comment:

Nina said...

Hi Olga,
My name is Nihan,I 'm Turkish.I 'm form Turkiye and I live in Izmir.(The Izmir very beautifel
I know a little a little a little english :) so that I can write bad

I rode the outlander 1 a year ago but I couldn't forget because I love James Fraser he he :)

In my opinion, James Fraser , Gerard Butler :)
My blog adress :Goggle search : nihanca anlatimlar or OCEAN'S FOUR.
I Hope see you ...
With my best wishes!