Saturday, October 3, 2009
Jamie Fraser, erstwhile Jacobite and reluctant rebel, knows three things about the American rebellion: the Americans will win, unlikely as that seems in 1778; being on the winning side is no guarantee of survival; and he'd rather die than face his illegitimate son -- a young lieutenant in the British Army -- across the barrel of a gun. Fraser's time-travelling wife, Claire, also knows a couple of things: that the Americans will win, but that the ultimate price of victory is a mystery. What she does believe is that the price won't include Jamie's life or happiness -- not if she has anything to say. Claire's grown daughter Brianna, and her husband, Roger, watch the unfolding of Brianna's parents' history -- a past that may be sneaking up behind their own family.
Not a full review, but just a quick post with no spoilers - I finished it! It was both satisfying and exasperating - loads of cliffhangers and loose threads to worry about over the course of the next four (?) years until the next Outlander installment. I did love it, but then I love everything about Outlander, still, is it the best? My favorite in the series? No.
The book had four or five main points of view, which was frustrating - in some ways it seemed like Outlander light. It was not like her past books where you become completely immersed in the details and story of Jamie and Claire - this one, you had parts of Jamie and Claire, Bree and Roger in 1980 Scotland, as well as young Ian and Lord John and Willie's stories during the Revolution. In my opinion, not quite enough to assuage my Outlander appetite, but I'll take and love anything Ms. Gabaldon writes, so I won't quibble about the lack of Jamie and Claire-ness in this book. I'm glad I've read the Lord John mystery books in the past, since in many ways they enhanced this book, but I did feel a bit put out for some people that haven't read them, for they will be a little lost about the importance of certain intriguing characters that come up here.
Some amazing revelations and events take place in this book - a bit of a "jump the shark" point in series? Maybe.
Still, I have to take a deep breath and soak it in and think about it all. A definite re-read eventually, but not right away.