Title: Outlander (Outlander #1)
Author: Diana Gabaldon
Genre: Historical Fiction
Rating: 4 Stars
Dates Read: 09 October to 15 October
I started reading this book the day after I left Scotland. For someone that had only done library research and had not been to Scotland yet, Diana Gabaldon was pretty accurate in her world building. Of course the landscapes and spirit of Scotland were fresh in my mind as I was reading - Invergordon (just outside of Inverness) and Edinburgh were the two Scottish ports on my British Isles cruise.
Outlander is the first book in the Outlander series. Claire Beauchamp Randall, a WWII nurse and plant-lover, travels with her historian husband Frank Randall to the Scottish highlands so he can do research on one of his family members. While Claire is exploring some of the local flora at a henge, she ends up in 1743, where she is face-to-face with Jack Randall, the very person Frank was researching. Claire escapes Jack, who shares her husband's face but not his temperament, and is captured by a clan of Scots that is also fleeing from Jack. After mending the wounded in her captor's party, she is taken back to Castle Leoch, where she becomes that castle's healer. It is also where she develops a relationship with one of the men that captured her, Jamie Fraser.
Although there is a lot of romance in the story (and let's be honest, a lot of sex), the story is so much more than that. I was instantly hooked (of course as I was reading I was imagining myself back in Scotland, traveling the highlands) and wanted to read more. Honestly I did not like Claire very much. She whined too much and was kind of a brat. I am also skeptical of her relationship to both Frank and Jamie. But I did not come for the romance, I came for the adventure, and the story does have that.
Although the book was long (almost 700 pages), the story was so well written and compelling that it was easy to continue reading. After the way the book ended, I cannot wait to read more of the story.
And hopefully another trip to Scotland is in my future as well.