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)
I could not wait to listen to this book everyday on my work commute. It was recommended to me by a coworker and I loved it. The ending leaves you completely hanging, but that is okay because you just want more with the next book. I did look at the plot summary for the next two that audible has and that was NOT SMART! It gave away sooooo much! So trust me, you will want to continue the series, but don't spoil for yourself like I did. My husband thought it was sweet revenge though, because I spoiled Harry Potter 6 for him and said that Dumbledore died. Ah well!
I do not particulary care for time travel novels. A friend of mine begged me to try this book. I was hooked from the very beginning. Gabaldon writes an excellent story with great descriptions of the Scottish Highlanders. And the characters are sooo captivating. They become part of your life. I cannot say enough about this series. You've just got to read it to see what I mean.
This outstanding story is a blend of time travel, romance, and history with a touch of medicinal knowledge, witchcraft, and danger also added. My all-time favorite read, now I can also enjoy the story on long car trips as well as introduce my teenage daughters to a great novel.
I have been meaning to read this book, but never have the time to invest in the project...and it IS a project. the book is HUGE! So, I was thrilled to get the audio instead (for those 4 hour commutes to and from work) then I listened. It was awful! The narrator actually made me sleepy. I tried for over 2 hours and just could not continue. I had to switch to a different book so as not to fall asleep at the wheel!
Diana Gabaldon is an excellent story teller keeping you on the edge of your seat. Davina Porter brought the book to life. Her narration could not have been better. I look forward to Diana's next books.
Several friends had mentioned the Outlander books to me, but I just didn't quite get the concept. A time-traveling 20th century nurse who got zapped to 18th century Scotland?? Hmmm. Didn't sound like the most interesting subject matter to me as it seemed a little too science fiction-y.
Ah, was I wrong. Outlander is a delightful tale, full of rollicking action, menacing characters, spinetingling scares, and a few horrors. I enjoyed the book immensely, as the author's writing flows so easily. Best of all, though, is the incredible narration by Davina Porter. She voices a myriad of characters and all are easily distinguishable.
I am anxious to start the second book in the series now!
I have devoured all of Diana Gabaldon books after I read Oulander years ago as soon as they were published. Listening to them is a special treat. The majority of the postings I read are asking for unabridged versions of all her books because reading her lengthy books (or listening to them) is WORTHWHILE!! So, Audible, are you listening?? When are ALL of Diana's books coming in unabridged version?
this audiobook has it all for a commuter like me: narration, a great storyline, and a length that makes it worth the purchase. the narration was clear, interesting, and pleasant to listen to. when she takes on the scottish accent, she does it very well and consistently, so as not to be distracting, but not such a heavy accent that one can't understand. the storyline is fun, adventure filled, there are enjoyable, complex characters, and yet it was easy enough to follow as i listened on my commute. while it is billed as a romance, the sex scenes are very minor. there are some parts that are graphic, but those are about the brutal war. i WILL say that if you love bonnie prince charlie the potrayal of him in the next book in this series is NOT flattering. clearly gabaldin does not have any sympathy for the scottish separatist movement.
"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.
"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.
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.
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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