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Publisher's Summary

A worldwide sensation with more than 12 million copies in print, Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series has produced #1 best-selling novels and earned a fiercely devoted fan base. Another spellbinding entry in the series, A Breath of Snow and Ashes continues the saga of 18th-century Scotsman Jamie Fraser and his 20th-century, time-traveling wife, Claire. The year is 1772, and the rift between Britain and its American colonies has put a frightening word into the minds of all concerned: revolution. In the backwoods of North Carolina, violence has already reared its ugly head, as cabins have been burned to the ground. To preserve the colony for King George III, the governor pleads with Jamie to bring the people together and restore peace. But Jamie has the privilege, although some might call it a burden, of knowing that war cannot be avoided. Claire has told him that the colonies will unite and rebel, and the result will be independence, with all British loyalists either dead or exiled. And there is an additional problem. Claire has discovered a newspaper clipping from 1776 that tells of Jamie’s death. With its epic scope, historical details, and sweeping romance, A Breath of Snow and Ashes is everything Gabaldon’s fans love and more.

©2005 Diana Gabaldon (P)2005 Recorded Books, LLC

Critic Reviews

"[A]n enthralling experience." ( Booklist)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

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Story

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Unabridged!

Fortunately the author and her agent have negotiated a change in her copyright contract to allow the sale of the unabridged version. Part of the agreement is that the abridged must remain available but that hopefully won't tempt anyone with a modest amount of good sense. After all how can you modify a book so large into such a small recording? (not without mangling it bad) The author is well known to dislike the abridged versions of her novels and is anxious that the remaining one, The Fiery Cross, be available in unabridged form around Nov. of 2011. As always I recommend reading the novels in order to get full benefit of the story of Claire and Jamie: Outlander, Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager, Drums of Autumn, Fiery Cross, A Breath of Snow and Ashes, and Echo in the Bone. Each is technically self standing but each builds on its predecessors and you will be very happy to discover older characters and evens. So if you haven't read any of the Outlander series yet do start with the first, Outlander. You'll be glad you did. A Breath of Snow and Ashes is worth waiting for anyway. :)

91 of 94 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • DIANE
  • Thornhill,, Ontario, Canada
  • 07-29-11

The Fraser family is addictive

I loved this book. I was so happy when Briana and Roger went through the stones to re-unite with Claire and Jamie. What a wonderful family saga. I have to say that Davina Porter does an incredible job reading these books. She brings them alive for me and how she manages to do all the accents and voices I don't know. I only know she does and it's wonderful. I'm reading Echo in the Bone and am sad that temporarily, until Ms. Gabaldon comes out with another book, I will be Fraser-less and MacKenzie-less. Something to look forward to.

16 of 16 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • B.J.
  • Minneapolis, MN, United States
  • 06-16-11

Another terrific listen.

Davina Porter's narration is perfect -- again. She is the voice of Claire for me. When I read the words, I hear Davina Porter. Plus, she handles all the other characters incredibly well, with a superb ability to set them apart and to hold their distinctions from beginning to end and from book to book.


Once again, I'm at the end of 57 hours of listening and would be just fine if there were more. I marvel at Diana Gabaldon's ability to write with quality and in quantity. If you're a fan, this is one of the most terrific books in the series. If you've not become a fan yet, start at the beginning. The characters are complex and getting the full measure of their lives is one of the most splendid things about this series.

61 of 64 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bonnie
  • Bellmore, NY, United States
  • 06-03-11

This is my favorite so far and I loved all!

I'm thrilled that Audible got the rights to the unabridged version of this, I hope the other will follow soon. Davina Porter is perfect in her narration. She pronounces the words perfectly, and carries the voice changes beautifully. It is a very long book I believe 57 hours, however it flew by because it was written and narrated perfectly. Thanks Audible.

31 of 33 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • S.
  • 06-29-12

Excellent -

This is an exceptional series. It is remarkable that Diana Gabaldon has maintained the writing quality in each book, not to mention throughout the series. While the last book was a minor step-down (a 4 v. 5), this one rebounds to the amazing level of prior books. Excellent book, excellent performance ~ !

9 of 9 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Uh...Mazing

This might be my favorite yet! One twist after another! I couldn't stop. It was worth the wait.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • steve
  • San Diego, CA, United States
  • 05-31-11

It's about time!

A great read to be sure! I read this when it was first released. And I was so disappointed when I found it was not offered as unabridged. Davina Porter's voice has certainly become Clair's so no other will suffice. When I saw that it is now available it took me about 5 seconds to click the download button. It's so easy to slip back to the 17th century when listening.

17 of 18 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Yet another fantastic addition to this series

I love this series of books. I love this narrator. I love that all the books in the series are now available on Audible (there were two in the middle that previously weren't). The Outlander series is what Audible is all about.

The series is the story of a woman who accidentally travels 200 years back in time and meets the love of her life. Whenever I explain this premise to people I get raised eyebrows, but the truth is that the books are more historical fiction than sci fi/fantasy. I read an interview with the author once in which she said she set out to write historical fiction, but just couldn't get into the mindset of an 18th century woman so devised the time travel in order to place a modern woman in the period she wanted to write about. That decision made the books even more interesting. All of the main characters are relatable and fleshed-out. The history is meticulously researched. The conversations, love stories, intrigue, etc feel organic. The descriptions of Scotland - both modern and historical - are amazing and make me love the country even though I've never been. I really have almost no criticisms of the writing.

Meanwhile, Davina Porter is one of the best narrators I've encountered in an audiobook. (Thank you, thank you to the narrator and audiobook producers or whoever arranged for the same narrator to read the whole series so far.) She manages to have a completely different voice for each main character and to my untrained ear moves effortlessly from one accent to another as the story dictates. Her American accent is not perfect, but it's still very good. She has a great cadence, sounds like she's read the book 100 times prior to narrating, and never stumbles over what must be incredibly difficult Gaelic words... (in fact, a friend of mine who is reading the whole series on paper calls me occasionally to have me pronounce the Gaelic words for her).

Clearly, these are some of my favorite all time audiobooks. Despite their length, I'm on my third time through the series. Speaking of length, all the books in the series are pretty long, but still only one credit so if you have an Audible subscription, they are great deals. In short, buy the books, you won't regret it.

23 of 25 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Kathryn
  • mendon, MA, United States
  • 07-08-11

Great stories.

I have a long commute and I really enjoy Diana Gabaldon's books. They are long, but the stories are so detailed I get lost in them. Davina Porter is a superb narrator. One forgets it is just one person acting out all of the characters. Very enjoyable!

16 of 18 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

THANK YOU!!!

It is about darn time!!!! Thank you sooo much for releasing the unabridged version! Now if we can just get The Fiery Cross it will be perfection!!! I love these books and to leave one iota of any of them out is sacrilege!

10 of 11 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • karin cornet
  • 01-22-13

Finally!!!!

Yesyesyes!! Finally the last book ofthe voyager series with Davina Porters beautiful voice.

Thank you Audible! Its been worthwhile waiting.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Susan
  • 01-21-13

At last

It's been a long wait for audible uk to release this. Having listened to and loved the first five of the outlander series I did not want to listen to this in an abridged version with another reader. Davina Porter is the voice of the Frasers. Now I can complete the series, I'm very happy, thank you.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Angela Whitear
  • 05-08-17

Outlander series will get you hooked

Don't start this series unless you are prepared to spend a lot of hours listening.It is compulsive and very difficult to put down.
The only complaint I have is that it is too racy to listen to when I am driving as I can't keep my attention on the road!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Jenna
  • 05-09-16

Amazing

Loved it and really think the narrator is the best there is. Absolutely fantastic from start to finish.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-18-18

Love love love

Love the way diana gabaldon writes. And the way davina porter tells the story. Can't wait to hear book 7.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mrs Kirsten L Davey
  • 03-07-18

Another great audible book

Another great performance by Davina Porter. She is fantastic with the different accents and is able to convey all the emotions in the book. I probably enjoyed The Fiery Cross slightly more than this book but I still couldn’t put this one down and love the vivid descriptions written Gabaldon. I am very keen to now move onto the next book in the series.

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Pen Name
  • 03-07-18

Back to real story telling

If you could sum up A Breath of Snow and Ashes in three words, what would they be?

Detail, suspense, characters.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Ian Murray. I have never been interested in the 'love story' between Jamie and Claire and in this book Ian is brought to life in a way he has not been before. We find out much more about him and why he is tortured.

What does Davina Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

She has an excellent range of accents and dialects and has a way of making your laugh out loud at the amusing bits.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

Laughed a few times especially at Jamie and also became emotional when Ian was talking about his time with his wife.

Any additional comments?

Interesting details about supertition, religious beliefs and differences between the slaves, the Europeans and the native American peoples, I learned so much from this book. Although I still cannot get to grips with Brianna and Roger and still cannot understand what their purpose is, they are quite shallow. But at least in this book we don't have to endure endless chapters describing breast feeding or breast milk which is a good thing.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • L A Sammons
  • 01-25-18

Wonderful story

I loved the story and it is beautifully read. I feel as if I really know these characters....they are so real to me. I can't wait to read/listen the next book.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 12-23-17

This book is amazing I am glad I chose it. I would reccomend it to people who enjoy the past and finding out how she got there.

I would reccomend it to people who like adventures. I think it is kind of like a mystery.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Marsbub
  • 12-12-17

Back on track<br />

This was so much more on track compared to the last one. Better pace and the story was so much more interesting than book 5...

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Maggiestampa
  • 08-02-16

Another brillant book.

These characters have become part of my daily life. I look forward to the next installment which I am downloading now..

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Kate
  • 08-31-16

And on and on it goes...

Once you've started this series you can't stop. Books 4, 5 & 6 start well, get boring and long, oh so long, in the middle and then find pace and agency at the end hooking you in & forcing you read the next book. Jamie & Clare remain excellent characters that I continue to love but there is too much 'historical tourism' that just doesn't add to the story. I would only recommend this book to avid fans - it is just such an onerous commitment if you are not totally invested in the characters and the series. The Starz television adaptation really is better than the books - not a comment I make lightly. Diana Gabaldon is excellent at creating characters you fall in love with, excellent at making you feel like you are really there but seriously, seriously, needs an editor and help with the plot. She almost boasts that she doesn't let her editor edit get stories and that she doesn't map out the story across each book or the series and you can tell. But I guess, as she's sold over 25 million books, it doesn't really matter.

3 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • krystyna
  • 03-07-18

Wow still interesting at book #7

Really such talent to keep a reader wanting to know where this story will take you. It’s intrigue and ebbs and flows are very planned and I can’t wait to read #8

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lyndy
  • 11-04-17

Another great chapter in the series

Beautifully narrated bringing the characters and the story to life.
I never tire of listening to this series.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 08-29-17

Amazing Writer & Fantastic Narrative!

This series is simply spellbinding... you just can't stop pressing play!

thanks so much Diana. 👏

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • HJ
  • 07-14-17

Absolutely brilliant!

What did you like most about A Breath of Snow and Ashes?

The story twists and turns, keeping the listener on the edge of their seat!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Definitely Jamie Fraser. He is truly indestructible!

What does Davina Porter bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you had only read the book?

She does the accents so well. So glad she does the whole series.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I did laugh a lot - the writer has a great sense of humour!

Any additional comments?

Just a great story - looking forward to the next book!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Denise
  • 07-01-17

Another master piece in this series.

The story is beautifully written and Davina Porter brings each character to life with her skilful narration . I feel like I know the characters intimately. Well done!

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-01-17

Beautifully Written

Loved the continuing story and storyline. Jamie and Claire's love for each other is endless

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-19-17

Download of Chapter 3

Part 3 of A Breath of Snow and Ashes won't download all other chapters are ok