Outlander

Posted: Tuesday, August 19, 2014, 8:38 am

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Outlander

Diana Gabaldon

1991

reserve now!

Kristin M

Adults

General fiction, Fantasy, Historical

bestseller, war

In brief

5

War, romance, history and just a dash of time travel made this book one of my all-time favorites.

Claire Randall is a World War II combat nurse, finally back home in England in 1945. To celebrate her safe return and the end of the war, she and her husband embark on a second honeymoon in Scotland.

Her relaxing trip is upended when she and her husband visit an ancient Druid stone circle. After witnessing a pagan religious ceremony, Claire ventures into the circle for a closer look at the ruins. After she touches one of the stones, she finds herself on the ground, stunned. Something about those ruins pushed her back through time. Before she knows what has happened, she's being carried by Scottish clansmen through the Highlands of 18th century Scotland.

Claire is immediately drawn into the drama and danger of Highland life during a war with the English. The clan that takes Claire in has another guest among its ranks-- Jamie, a Scottish warrior outlawed for killing a British soldier. After Claire uses her nursing knowledge to help Jamie after he is injured, the clan decides to keep her until their leader decides whether to turn her over to the English. Considered an outlander-- an English outsider in Scotland-- Claire must be careful to obey orders and acclimate to clan life without branding herself as a threat.

With its rich descriptions of Scottish landscapes and daily life, Outlander drew me in from the beginning. Throw in intriguing characters, political drama and romance, and the story is wonderfully rounded. It was so hard to put down that I'm already starting the second book in the series.

Of course, now I'm doomed to get pulled into the Starz Network adaptation of the story, but I love these characters so much that I can't say that I mind.