In 1945, former combat nurse Claire Randall returns from World War II and joins her husband for a second honeymoon. Their blissful reunion is shattered when she touches a boulder in an ancient stone ruin and is instantly transported to 1743 Scotland, a place torn by war and raiding border clans. Will Claire find her way back to her own time, or is her destiny forever linked with Clan MacKenzie and the gallant James Fraser?
©1991 Diana Gabaldon; (P)1997 Recorded Books, LLC.
"Davina Porter maintains the distinct voices she creates for each character throughout the lengthy narration. Her delivery of 18th-century language sounds authentic and is easily understandable." (AudioFile)
This book was the typical seemingly strong independent woman who really just wants to be dominated by the "bad boy who is actually a good guy" type of romance. I really wanted to love it, but the pacing was dreadfully slow, and I actually never finished it. I had wanted a series to pull me in, so I even looked, after finishing about 90% of this, to see if maybe it was just a fluke, and maybe the later books would be more engrossing, but from the reviews I read, it sounds like the other books are more of the same.
Definitely the spanking scene. Domestic violence is not okay. Romanticized domestic violence is even worse. I understand it was part of the culture, but this really made me dislike Jamie. Especially when it has the other men telling him afterwards that he didn't need to be so rough. If he would have done it reluctantly, it would have been one thing, but she made it clear that he took great pleasure from it, and that is simply disturbing.
Listening to Davina Porter narrate this tale of a time traveling saucy wench makes me cringe! The romantic (read 'sexy' ) bits, always trying in audio, sound ridiculous coming from her perfectly enunciated mouth. I know, I'm getting old, and I'm way past this kind of book.
It was too long and repetitive. I enjoyed the beginning, then I was waiting for it to become really interesting, it just became eventful. It is not my kind of book, I know now.
I am not sure if this was or not part of the plan, but I did not enjoy (at all) the tyrant-gay angle of Captain Randall.
The performance was ok for the story.
Yes, I like many things about the story, but I just grew tiresome at some point. The same story could have been told in half a time.
I can't say enough about this series. I've now read or listened to Outlander and most of the other books three times and and the last time was every bit as enjoyable as the first. This series is complex and engaging with so many dimensions there is always something new to discover.
It could've been much shorter.
I also would've left out the unnecessarily, uncomfortable description of the main character being violated. The author went further than necessary in her efforts to convince the reader of how broken the main character was. I understand it is sometimes necessary to shock the audience to invoke sympathy or strong emotion in order to make a connection with a character, but this was over the top.
I actually could not fiinish the story because of the incident. I was too disgusted, ashamed, and many other emotions to ever have enough respect for the main character to be able to read on.
As previously mentioned, the hero of the story was subjected to things that were revolting and destroyed the story.
I could see it being made into a movie or TV series but I doubt I would watch it. It was essentially a love story wrapped up in an interesting setting and plot twists. I don't mind love stories but I'm not sure what would be gained by translating this to TV or movies. A good love story is better told than shown.
The author kept me hooked for a long story but ruined it near the end. I can't say it was all bad but I also can't say that I would recommend it.
The story is great. I have read it before more than once. Davina Porter, the narrator really brings the characters to life. She is amazing!
Her accents and intonations are great. Perfection!
I did enjoy this book but it is soooooo long. The narration was good and the story interesting. I just felt there was too much filler with all the descriptions that go on and on and some of cringe-worthy scenes between Claire and Jamie. It was a little too "Mills and Boons" at times.
Time travel and Scotland are merely deep background for what is really a romance novel. Mostly it is a fantasy about a woman in a boring, but adequate marriage who travels back in time (never explained how - she is just transported through standing stones. Somehow). Once there, she gets a hot Scottish guy. There was just too much eroticized violence for me. Again and and again, he is flogged or tortured in a salacious manner, in scenes that are long and tedious. I am not above this sort of thing, really, but this whole book was just so bloody boring. The thing I probably hated the most was that he actually beats her with a belt in a fairly long scene, and she comes to believe that she deserved it. It's not an S/M scene, just a spouse abuse scene. II really hated this book. No idea why it is so popular.
Captain Randall's character was pretty cliché
exasperated, patronizing, wise
have some fallout after the rape and beating scene
This is a good story, well written and well read. The sex scenes are a bit long story, a bit much sex from a male point of view. This may be a chick flick type of thing. But the romance is good. You may need to listen on headphones when the grandchildren are visiting.
Audible should note which titles are embarrassing to listen to without headphones.
"Outlander (Cross Stitch)"
Having read the books many years ago as they were written, I thought it would be interesting to listen to the first one being told. It was very quickly addictive and many things went by the wayside until I finished listening to the story. Davina Porter was very good, however, I agree with the reviewer who commented on her Scottish voices. I am Scottish, and the accents did grate slightly. However I appreciate the difficulties in being female and trying to narrate in an 18th century male Highlander voice. Overall, very entertaining, and very enjoyable. I look forward to listening to the others.
"Lose yourself in a gripping story."
I thoroughly enjoyed this. Being a bloke I was looking for a nice time travel adventure but I soon got caught up in the thrills and spills of highland life without missing the real reason for choosing the book. The first couple of chapters drag a bit but keep close attention as they make historic references picked up later on. I was fascinated and enthralled!
"First book of a series"
This series is a mixture of science fiction, history, medicine and romance. Forget historical or geographic accuracy. This is escape and should be taken as fiction based on fact. Diana Gabaldon wrote this as an exercise and did it extremely well, even though she had never visited Scotland before writing Outlander. It is thought provoking, funny, sad, erotic and dramatic.
There are, to date, six books in the series following the Frasers from Culloden (and the lead up to it) to the beginning of the War of Independence in America. There is one or possibly two more books to come.
Ever wondered where certain ideas came from? Who thought of putting phosphate on bits of wood with an air proof covering? Could have been someone who had already seen the idea in action.
I thoroughly enjoyed the books and Davina Porter is an excellent narrator. She manages to capture a 1940's English female accent but still does a very good Scottish male voice. Quite an achievement and well worth listening to.
A page turning bodice ripper with added pornography. The book started off ok but I found the increasing dominance of the sex scenes became boring. Definitely written to appeal to women rather than men - my husband couldn't stand it and gave up on the first book.
"Get out of bed and get on with the story!"
The story gets the narration it deserves. Both are tedious and more Mills and Boon (I imagine as I haven't read any) than serious historical novel. A possibly good idea is interrupted by so much sex and "oooohhhhh Jaaaammmmieeee" that it never really gets a chance. I did listen right through to the end, even though I wanted to stop half way, and have masochistically even gone part way through the second book, thinking it may improve, which it didn't. If anything it got worse. Unfortunately I bought three of this series at the same time on the basis of other reviews, but just couldn't face any more of this tedious drivel.
About 60% of it.
I can honestly say that nothing I have read has annoyed me more than this series.
I found this painful to listen to. Firstly the reader speaks as though she is the Queen, which I found really off-putting at times. Secondly, the chapters before the time travel drag on and on and on and on and on and on and on and on.... and they go into so much boring detail about things that no-one could possibly be interested in. It also included some of the most excrutiatingly embarrassing and unsexy sex scenes.
I thought once the time travel happened, I would be embarking on a thrilling historical romp. I was sorely disappointed. It was more of the interminable detailed descriptions of the most boring events and more of the awful sex scenes.
I actually fell for the 5* reviews on this book and feel like a bit of a fool for doing so. This really is "chick lit" and quite poor at that. The story is historically very weak indeed and is really aimed at female titillation because every other scene revolves around sex and, to be honest, it's so damned boring! What's more it has the clichéd goody v baddy storyline that has been done to death since time immemorial.
It took so long to get going that I almost gave up on it on three or four occasions. It's a shame really because when it did get going it was actually quite good but for 70% of the time it wasn't. If it wasn't for Davina Porter's amazing narration I don't think I'd have stuck it out til the end. Without her wonderful voice the whole thing would've ground to a halt rapidly.
To put it in the sci-fi/fantasy section is a bit misleading because the only thing that is faintly related to this genre is the initial time slip. With a bit of imagination from the author we could've really been put into the excitement and terror of a 20th century woman suddenly finding herself in the 18th century but instead we have a main character that knew exactly how to behave and speak from the start and was all too accepting of her situation.
Because the times where the story got moving were quite good I give it 3*s but for the most part it was a load of tosh and I certainly shall not be listening to any more of the series!
"well worth listening to"
I was never sure about reading audiobooks until an injury meant that I couldn't hold a book to read. So I bought Outlander a historical novel - has wrongly been labelled a romantic fiction - should be relabelled as a historical fiction, I enjoyed in paper form but listening to it on Audiobook really really makes a difference, Davina Porter (the narrator) has a natural gift at bringing the various characters to life. I absolutely love this book, so much so that I rave about it to all my friends and I have listened to the book on more than one occassion. I would definitely recommend it.
"Eat your heart out Barbara Cartland!"
Some degree of historical reality/accuracy is useful in a historical novel,.
Lacked any depth, just a bodice ripper using a historic setting - the Scottish highlands. No conception or the era or realistic characterization.
No. Heroine, "oh gosh, I've time travelled, never mind."
No redeeming features for me. A big error. Thought it may be interesting and a little different. It was certainly different to anything I would spend time listening to.
My mistake, but perhaps it should have been made clearer in the blurp that this was a shallow bodice ripper in Mills and Boon gendre and should be avoided by all but those of a certain gender and age.
"A great escape"
I loved this book. The idea of time travel has always fascinated me and this book does it wonderfully. I could not stop listening to this story and was sorry when it came to an end. I can't wait to listen to the next part of the story!
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