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)
Once I listened to this first book I had to keep going. I love the story line and I am now on book 6, which does not have an unabridged audio so I am reading it so as not to miss one word. This book, however, surpasses the rest as far as excitement and romance. The romance is so tastefully done it was a pleasure to listen to from begining to end.
As an avid reader and Audible.com member, I love books but also always have an awareness of how the book I'm listening to makes me feel. That's how I decide how much I've enjoyed it. By that standard, this book is one of the very best I've ever listened to! I enjoyed every element of this book - the love story between Claire and Jamie, the history of the Scottish Highlander Clans and Jacobite uprisings that occurred in the mid 18th century, the descriptive writing (like none I've ever experienced) and Davina Porter's beautiful voice. Diana Gabaldon is such an amazing writer! To those who say this book is like pornography, I say, have you ever read a romance novel? In fact, Outlander's love scenes are much less descriptive than most I've come across. You are aware of the act they're engaged in, but it is not offensive by any means. Jamie and Claire are newlyweds in love for heavens sake. I would recommend this book to anyone - you will slip away and lose yourself and love every second of it!
The narrator is FANTASTIC! Able to capture the accent wonderfully and give subtle differences to character voices that make them easily distinguishable. The writing is elegant, the romance is NOT overdone (I have read a LOT of romance novels and this book is nowhere near as graphic many I have read) and to tell the truth, I felt MYSELF falling in love with Jamie Fraser! During the recounting of the hero's disgusting and graphic encounter with the villain (be warned) I felt depressed and hurt for him. I laughed and worried and wallowed in sentiment and listened when I should have been doing other things. This book wont change your life but it will give you hours of entertainment and let you escape the confines of the day to day hustle and bustle for a while....and leave you dying to come back for more.
If you love time travel...this is your book! If you love accurate accounting of historical fiction...this is definitely your book! Diana Gabaldon is undeniably one of the best writers of historical time travel I have ever read. She has combined adventure, romance and intrique into one "on the edge of your seat" novel. Set in 1940ish England and 1740ish Scotland, Claire, a nurse who served in WWII ,finds herself transported to the wild and uncivilized world of 18th century Scotland. There she finds romance amidst danger during one of Scotland's most embattled times...you will NOT be able to put this book down until the VERY last page. The great thing is...this is a continual series, so life with Claire and her Jamie are not over at the end of this book!!
I really enjoyed this interesting look into the Scottish Clans and their demise. Loved the narrative with the proper Gaelic pronunication. I am now listening to the second book in the series. I would recommend this book as a romantic historical novel that brings real character to the fate of the Scots.
I originally stumbled on this story at the bookstore and after I started reading I had to purchase it on Audible so I could listen and drive. The story of Jamie and Claire will have you hooked and the narrator does such a fantastic job she makes listening to the story better than reading it myself. I have finished all that Diana Gabaldon has written so far in this series and eagerly await the next book.
Interesting premise. I tend to enjoy historical novels - I try to immerse myself into the era portrayed. This was a simple task with this book. I followed this book immediately with Alex Haley's Roots. I was intrigued by the relatively short difference in time frame - thinking about Scotland in the mid-1700's and America in the later 1700's. Good stuff.
This novel is the first in a series that I happened upon when buying audio books for a 30-hour drive. It surpassed my expectations in all areas since it is no cookie-cutter romance novel - it is a saga with such rich characters and descriptions that you can practically smell the heather! The entire series is a must for anyone who is looking for a novel to not only entertain, but to make them think! Every time I read it, more details are revealed that I missed the first (or second or third) time! This story is one to savor but definitley one to keep away from the ears of the children due to the sexy love scenes as well as the not so sexy love scenes! I won't spoil it for you - read the book! You won't be sorry. The narration is excellent and D. Porter does an excellent job of all the accents (English, Scottish, French, etc) as well as making the men's voices believable too.
I enjoy historical fiction, but I usually avoid romance novels. I was a little apprehensive about this one, but I have enjoyed the series enough to purchase the first four novels. That being said, though, I have to take a break and listen to other books in-between...a little too much sappy romance at times.
I would imagine most men would "not" enjoy this series. It definitely does not belong in the sci-fi genre, time travel is not explored in-depth and is just used to set-up the premis of the story. Not a high-brow read, but entertaining...in smaller doses.
"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.
"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!
"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.
This is a book I Chose mainly on the blurb that accompanies most books, but what a choice!. This is by far the best book I have read in many years. I was hooked from the first chapter and just had to go on reading all the following books in the saga. I was very disappointed Audible decided to include an abridged version with a different narrator and had to go elsewhere for the unabridged version. That said I would recommend this book and all subsequent books in the series to all who like romance, action,eroticism and history because this saga has the lot. Highly recommended
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!
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.
"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!
"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.
I acquired this as the free title in a 3 for 2 offer. Thank goodness I didn't pay for it!
Be very careful, the sample is taken from the sensible start of the book.
I only managed half of it - 16 hours of sex and violence fantasies are more than enough for me.
If your idea of fun is a huge 18th century be-kilted Scotsman being beaten and having sex incessantly, this may be for you.
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