Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander #2) by Diana Gabaldon

9781784751364

Recently widowed,Claire Randall,a successful physician,returns to the Scottish Highlands to look up a Scottish historian she met twenty years earlier. But why has she really come back? And who is the father of her beautiful copper-haired daughter?

The questions asked by Claire lead her back towards a far,far distant past- back to the dangers and hardships of 1745 and to Jamie Fraser, passionate Scottish rebel and the love of her life.

WHERE CAN I GET IT: QBD the Bookshop, paperback, $22.99, audiobook, $95.99

WHEN CAN I GET MY HANDS ON IT: NOW!

WHAT CAN I EXPECT: Sexy Scotch men, time travel, witchcraft, illegitimate children, mother daughter tension, history galore!

Despite recent comments made by Gabaldon on Twitter (which I happen to agree with) re: english majors and the usefulness of those degrees; I refuse to refrain from reading her work regardless of my position on her comments.

I adore this series, and though I liked the second installment slightly less than the first, I am desperate to continue to the end. I NEED to know what happens with Gilly Duncan, did Jamie survive Collodden Field?

I was admittedly a little bored by the start of this book, I didn’t like the present (1960s) setting and felt like I got a bit of an info dump when Claire goes to visit Roger with Briana after the death of the reverend. There’s just a whole big bunch of explaining that I didn’t really appreciate.

I find it a little hard to follow the immense number of characters in these books, especially when listening to the audio editions, but its not as bad as other novels I’ve read.

What I truly love about these books is the historical aspect. I can find no fault with any of the parts of this story in the 1700s. I love the highlanders, I LOVE Jamie, I love Claire and how well she has used her upbringing and knowledge to help herself fit in to a time well before her. I love the political intrigue, the twisted family trees, the shady goings on, the small pox aspect of the story is a nice period appropriate touch (vividly described as it is and probably horrible as it was).

It is an immersive world that is well researched and perfectly executed. I just feel that Gabaldon struggles with the simplicity of writing a present day setting as I found those parts of this book to be the weakest aspect.

The French court setting an amazing addition to this book as well, what a treacherous place to try and survive! I quite enjoyed how Claire became La donne Blanche as well!

I have always felt like I would struggle to read the print books in this series, they are massive and highly intimidating, so I have read the first two installments via Audible and it was probably the best decision I’ve ever made, Davina Porter’s narration is SUPERB. She does male and female voices, French, Scottish, American and British accents and all without skipping a beat. Even if I wasn’t enjoying the books, I would probably continue the series just to keep listening to Porter’s narration.

The depth and detail to which Gabaldon goes is incredible, I have no qualms in continuing this series, massive though it is!

Final rating: 4/5 stars

-Sam, xxoo

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