Somewhere between fantasy and romance fiction lies this epic novel called Outlander, the first in a seven part series….recommended to me by good friend Julie. This is the story of Claire Randall, who travels to Scotland with her husband Frank for a second honeymoon in 1945. They haven’t had much of a chance to be together in their eight-year marriage because of the war and hope that this trip will rekindle the flame. While out for a walk one day, Claire touches one of the stones in the stone circle (i.e. something like Stonehenge) which in a flash transports her back in time to 1743 Highlands Scotland. There she meets Jamie, a Highlander, who has been injured and uses her skills as a nurse, obtained in the war. As Claire starts to settle into her new life, she finds herself becoming more and more attached to the stubborn, prideful yet kind Jamie. When forced to marry him to save her life, sparks fly….and chaos ensues. Will she find a way back to her time? Will she even want to go back?
I give this book 4 out of 5 stars on the BRFMF scale (meaning I really liked it). This is a fun bit of entertainment perfect for summer reading. The historical detail and richness of the background make for interesting reading. The relationship between Claire and Jamie is both contentious and sweet. You get to know both of their characters really well and I found most of the time I understood their motivations. Usually in romance novels, I find that the heroine is completely unbelievable and doesn’t make any kind of mistakes. She’s just beautiful and stubborn and likes to get into fights with the hero. Claire is beautiful and she is prideful, but she does make mistakes, and she’s not always sure of herself.
Really, I gave this book an extra star just for being in Scotland which everyone knows is the sexiest country 😉
Three Appeals: Time Travel, Romance, Historical Background
What to Read Next : If you like the time travel romance aspect of this book I would try Somewhere in Time by Richard Matheson in which a man sees a picture of a woman and obsessively tries to go back in time to meet her. Another title to try is My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares which showcases a romance that continues on through time in the form of reincarnation. If you think that Scotland is another word for sexy, then you might try Highland Rogue by Tess Mallory in which an archaeologist is transported back to the Highlands to meet her Scottish hero. Finally, for a more comic turn at traveling through time check out The History of Lucy’s Love Life in Ten and a Half Chapters by Deborah Wright. Lucy has become fed up with modern men and uses a time travel machine to go back and meet the great lovers of history with suprising and sometimes disappointing results.