Somehow I stupidly missed the fact that this was a romance. It actually starts out well, with interesting historical details and characters, and rapidly dissolves into the sappiest romance on earth. More than 50% of of the book was "romantic scenes," each one more absurd than the next.
But what makes this book horrible for me is the underlying conservative Christian mantra; the heroine begins as a strong, independent woman and then the story, and her character, dissolves into a highly predictable plot based on "family values." She is "forced" to marry the handsomest man in the land, so she can safely remain within the bounds of conservative teaching while living out her fantasies. It follows without saying that the villain is an evil homosexual with twisted sadomasochistic practices, who is vanquished in the end. I can just imagine Laura Bush hiding this book under her pillow...
I should have realized this from the fact that just about all the rave reviews seem to be from women. This is a bodice-heaving, soft porn, harlequin romance with a bit of history thrown in. If you are estrogen challenged, don't bother. I gave it two stars instead of one only because it's not badly written for this sort of thing and the narrator is ok.
This series, for if you read this first book, you will read the entire series, is the bar I set all other characters against. I feel I know Claire and Jamie. I miss them when the book ends. Diana makes me feel so many emotions when I read her books the scenes are so very real. This is not a "standard" happy ending romance - it is so much more. The characters have happiness but also tremendous sadness and trials.
I must admit the first maybe 2 chapters I was not committed but once I got past that - wow! It is truly a gift Diana Gabaldon has to transform words into emotions and memories. I have listened to each of her books 2x and still havenot listened to an Echo in the Bone - the last book - which I purchased the day it was released. WHY??? because I don't want to lose Claire and Jamie.
Outlander should be in the romance section. The author felt the need to share her sexual fantasies with the reader over and over and over... I could not make it through this book let alone finish the
trilogy. Remember Clan of the Cave Bear?
I love, love, loved this audiobook. The narrators voice is perfect with all the different accents and characters. The story itself is excellent. I laughed out loud, I cried, I cringed in some parts but mostly my heart ached and wanted for the love these two shared. The 32 hours was not long enough. I'm looking forward to more unabridged books from Diana Gabaldon. I highly recommend.
Audiobooks have changed how I drive! I look forward to driving for work when I have a good book on deck.
I sincerely tried to get through this unnecessarily detailed laden book, but it zaps my energy each time. The narration is slow and uninspiring - I switched to listening through the audible app and changed the narration speed to 1.25x which helped, but not much. How did this book garner such praise....it's so boring. The author managed to make easy A topics (historical romance and time travel) almost unendurable. I'll keep trying, but not while driving for fear of falling asleep at the wheel.
I love this book and all the ones that follow. It is such a beautiful love story that spans the centuries. What chemistry DG builds with all of the love couples in her stories and winds them around history with such expertise.