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)
Don't review many books, but thought I'd throw my two cents in here because the reviews seem pretty heavily weighted towards "wonderful". I got this for a few reasons; excellent reviews, it is unabridged, time travel, etc. But ... nobody can get zapped back 200 years and girlishly giggle with her new 1740's husband in the span of a month or two; the heroine also mentions the name of Roosevelt in the 1740's and doesn't get asked "who's that?". If you are into descriptive male homosexual rape, multiple instances of heterosexual sex and rape attempts, are into watching serial tv or soaps and a femme fetale cliche heroine, I suppose you'll give it five stars. Kudos to the narration, which is excellent, but not the story ... there would have been room in more than 30 hours for much more intrigue. But, I suppose sex sells more than research of time travel.
Omit sexually violent titillation from abuse by her "lover."
The whole story: too violent and immature.
The story reeks of male dominance and female helplessness. Sadism should not be sold as "entertainment." I'm sorry I bought this book.
~~~"HOPEFUL ROMANTIC"~~~ *** Love Audio Books....Especially Historical Romances *** ~~ "Reviews Should Never Contain spoilers ~~
I didn't hate this book but I didn't love it either. I guess I'm in the minority here but I had a hard time getting into this book. I love romance and sci-fi novels but I had difficulty staying interested. It wasn't a total disaster because most of the book I really enjoyed but then I would find myself totally bored. I eventually did finish it but it left me feeling a little disappointed. The reviews on this one were great so my expectations were high. I was hoping I would absolutely love it. I might revisit this one again in the future.....maybe the second time around will be better. I hope so!! If the second book in the series goes on sale I may try that one too....I will keep trying.
I do not understand the rave reviews. I stayed with Outlander until the end--as I have experienced many books whose endings have redeemed my otherwise disappointed investment. But, Outlander never delivered. Outlander is nothing more than setup. There is no plot beyond a series of close calls and narrow escapes with sex scenes between.
I know it's a series and that's the problem with series--authors often don't feel like they owe their readers a good story within the covers of the page they are currently holding. I am unwilling to trust the author with another 38 hours for the Book2. Each book in the series gets increasingly longer-- 26, 38, 43, 44, 55 and 57. Maybe the other books are better, but I certainly cannot trust the reviews I've read, so I'm out after one.
Readers that like romance
reader was ok, everything just seems too dramatic, but might be story's
Please stop labeling this as fantasy!!!
This is listed as fantasy, but there is negligible amount of fantasy element. At best it's historical fiction. But at its heart, it's a torrid romance and should be labelled as such.
Is it silly to criticize a time travel book as being "unrealistic"? It stretches credulity that a woman can find herself 200 years in the past and yet fit in just fine and pass as a person of that time. The story is ok. The characters remain who they are throughout the book, there's know growing or changing. I found the sex scenes tedious. The performance was the best part of the book, the story leaves me cold. The epilogue (?) let me curious about will happen next, nevertheless I won't be listening to any more books in the series.
I felt the need to write a review for this book because I was fooled by the positive reviews. If you find abuse against woman offensive, then don't read this one.
First off, the beginning of this book is very boring and I found myself hardly listening at all. It got a bit more interesting once she time-traveled, and then I was actually into the book once the love story started to develop. Everything changed the moment the love interest decided to beat his wife, the main character, in order to punish her. She then got over it pretty quickly and told him that she loved him the day after the beating. He then later admitted that he enjoyed beating her because of the sexual arousal he obtained from it. This book then seems to go down a BDSM type pathway, but I can't tell you much more because I stopped listening at that point.
I just can't understand how so many people can praise this for being such a wonderful love story. Yes, I understand this was a different time period where wives obeyed their husbands and husbands punished their wives, and I know this was a difficult time in Scotland, but I still believe it's wrong for a husband to beat his wife despite this. I cannot approve of a book that not only shrugs off the seriousness of the abuse, but promotes it as part of the love story.
If it wasn't for my rule of having to finish a book once I start I would have shined this on very early. The protagonists Claire and Jamie were so annoying. I understood why Randall despised them. I am at a loss to understand why women liked this book so much given the level of violence in it. Men, stay aware from this book!
I'm almost finished with listening to the entire audiobook. It's good to listen to just to keep your mind occupied while doing mindless chores. It's just too lengthy for lengthiness' sake, it seems. There are too many characters doing too many things that really don't tie up the story into a neat little package. An "East of Eden" it is not!!
If you're looking for an adventurous and historical period piece, "The Pillars Of The Earth" is a much more enthralling experience. Similarly, "The Time Traveler's Wife" is a vastly superior exploration of temporal dislocation as well as a stunningly moving love story. Where does that leave "Outlander"? It's a simple minded bodice ripper. The story line is repeatedly destroyed by dime store sex scenes that border on S&M. Don't be fooled by the high ratings. This is nothing more than formula fiction and gratuitous erotica.
I absolutely loved this book, it was a joy to listen to. Davina Porter is one of the best narrators I have had the pleasure of listening to, her character voices are extraordinary and Gabaldon's story telling is second to none!
"Treat to come"
Once started on this series it is a serious committment as all Diana Gabaldon's books are long.
She is very wordy, but hold out for the unabridged versions as you miss so much otherwise.
The time proximity of Culloden and the American War of Independence allow for her putting her characters in some very interesting situations. Sometimes you get rather fed up with all the detail of child rearing in very basic conditions, but it is worth persevering.
The series is very well read and I have looked forward to each book. The unabridged versions should all be available soon as I understand that there were contractual obligations that expire after 10 years.
MS PORTER NARRATED WELL THE STORY WAS FUN ALLBEIT A LOT OF HANKY PANKY BUT ON THE HOLE WORTH A READ I WILL GET AT LEAST THE 2ND BOOK IN THE SERIES I WOULD CLASS THIS AS EASY READING GOOD FOR A HOLIDAY
I first read this book about 15 years or so ago, in the english version, it was called Crosstitch...it was only in 2002 in australia that I discovered it was now redubbed Outlander for the American readership (or maybe the reverse?)
Either way it is an addictive listen.
I have now read the first 6 first novels and am halfway through listening to the 7th on Audiobook.
Just as an exercise in reminiscence, I downloaded the first book since I can't locate my hard copy...
I look forward to listening to it, the narrator is superb!
"Not for me"
I rarely give up on a novel, but this one just seemed a little too silly in its premise.
This title would have been good if it weren't for the countless explicit descriptions of her lovemaking, I thought I was going to get an historical adventure but this should be labelled under erotic fiction, there was far too much descriptive sex and not enough action and had I known I would not have bought this title, this isn't really about adventures in Scotland but more about her sexual adventures.
"Beautifully written and beautifully narrated"
Davina Porter has done an amazing job of bringing one of my favourite novels to life. The distinct voices (and spot-on accents) she gives to both the English and Scots characters are perfect, and if anything, I think I enjoyed listening to the story more than reading it for myself.
My only slight criticism is of the recording itself. In many places I could hear talking and laughter in the background, as though the narrator was inside a building with busy crowds outside her room. A number of times I actually paused my iPod thinking the sound came from nearby, only for the chatter to disappear with the audiobook. It is only slight, but there nevertheless.
If, like me, you are listening to audiobooks at work or in a car where there is already background noise to some extent, it would be unlikely to trouble you. However, if you like stories at bedtime, in the quiet, it may be more noticeable and irksome.
I am buying all the other Diana Gabaldon books narrated by Davina Porter - and although the last two in the series are not currently available, I hope they soon will be.
"Outlander (or Cross Stitch)"
This is a thoroughly enjoyable story, and I agree with 'L' that Davina Porter does very well with Claire's voice, but I do find that the Scottish voices grate on the ear - these are Highlanders, after all, not Rab C Nesbitt! However, I am English, not Scots, and it may just be that the voices are not those I heard in my head!!! Odd little eccentricities (surely 'chirugeon' should be 'shirjun' not 'kiragon', and why 'played' instead of 'plad' for 'plaid'?)do not really detract from a well-read story, any more than Diana Gabaldon's occasional use of Americanisms instead of 'english' English.
I am sure that, if you want a story to get lost in for a (long...) while, you will enjoy this.
"Innacurate but entertaining"
It is very obvious from listening to this that the author had neither visited Scotland nor spent a lot of time researching her subject. There are glaring innacuracies (use of the Selkirk Grace by a character 16 years before the birth of its author, Robert Burns for one) and she shows a distinct lack of knowledge of the basic geography of the Highlands.
If taken as pure fiction, it is entertaining, and the narrator does make a fair attempt at the accents and language, but should have been coached in fundamental pronunciation of Scots.
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