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Number-one New York Times best-selling author Diana Gabaldon has captivated millions with her critically acclaimed Outlander novels, the inspiration for the Starz original series. From the moment Claire Randall stepped through a standing stone circle and was thrown back in time to the year 1743 - and into a world that threatens life, limb, loyalty, heart, soul, and everything else Claire has - fans have been hungry to know everything about this world and its inhabitants, particularly a Scottish soldier named Jamie Fraser.
In this beautifully written compendium of all things Outlandish, Gabaldon covers the first four novels of the main series.
For anyone who wants to spend more time with the Outlander characters and the world they inhabit, Diana Gabaldon here opens a door through the standing stones and offers a guided tour of what lies within.
Don't get this book if you're expecting another Claire and Jamie story. That's not what this is!
it's exactly what it says it's a "companion" to the first four books. In the beginning, you get a foreword from Diana Gabaldon herself. Then you get basically the "Cliff's Notes" for the first four books in the series Outlander, Dragonfly In Amber, Voyager, and Drums of Autumn.
This book is mostly narrated by Diana herself. I find this fascinating .... some listeners say they thought she was a terrible narrator and that parts of this companion are boring -REMEMBER this is NOT a story - this is more like an educational guide and a journey into the mind of Diana herself. We find out how she goes about creating the most wonderful book series in the world. It's like getting into the mind of a mad scientist. She has such a quirky way of reading - I find her narration wonderful.
Maybe some people don't like this companion book simply because there's not enough Jamie and Claire (and while I love Jamie and Claire) - this companion book is absolutely fascinating to learn a little bit of the magic behind all of the madness or the madness behind the magic whichever you want to say! She delves into all kinds of things that's readers may have questions about - not only in the story but in her personal life.
What I think is really great that and author would open up to her audience like this! She even includes a couple recipes! (she does read them out - it's an audio book if you don't want to hear her read out recipes - just FF through that part!)
Without a doubt, the best part of the entire companion is her letter to a friend about how one of her days went. I was rolling laughing! She truly is amazing - she just has such a gift and it's not just when she's writing Outlander books - she can write a plain ol' letter and have you riveted!
She's let her readers and fans in on a little piece of herself. I am so thrilled that she decided to narrate most of it herself. If you're a true Diana Gabaldon fan (not just a Jamie and Claire fan) you're going to love this!
I do recommend purchasing the hardcover book as well so that you can look at the pictures, the horoscope chart, and recipes.
Oh my goodness the "Butt Cooties" section is hilarious - I'm talking laugh out loud type stuff.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
I just don't have the words. I adore hearing Diana Gabaldon and laugh at her wonderful experience,. I absolutely love Davina Porter WOW! Thank you Diana for the other world!
10 of 10 people found this review helpful
Oh, what a fun listen! The Outlandish Companion is a reference based on the first four books of the Outlander series. Ms. Gabaldon describes how she began writing novels, her research approach (fascinating), synopses of books one to four, questions she gets from fans, etc.
This audiobook is narrated by Davina Porter, as well as author Diana Gabaldon. Ms. Porter narrates most of the Outlander audiobooks (I believe the novellas have a different narrator) and is wonderfully talented. Ms. Gabaldon's narration is candid and refreshing... listening to her comments felt like listening to a friend and made me like the Outlander series even more. Highly recommended for Outlander fans -- the kindle version is very good but the unabridged audiobook is amazing!
12 of 13 people found this review helpful
Any additional comments?
The Davina Porter sections are good, She brings the Outlander series to life. The chapters read by Diana Gabaldon are hard to take.
5 of 5 people found this review helpful
To me, this book would have been much better purchased as a true book. It is a companion and therefore something that you can pick up when you need to remember something about the series. It is a great book, but I don't feel listening to it is the best way to read it.
3 of 3 people found this review helpful
In fact I had to shut it off before it WAS over because it was that horrendous.The author's portion of this was like one of those radio commercials where they speed up the legal information at the end of the ad for whatever they are selling so it sounds like it is on fast forward and you cant even keep up. With Davina Porter such an enormous voice to listen to both in character, tempo, talent, and pleasurable sound, this was the complete opposite..... and the Rambling about recipes and toilet seats? I bought this hoping to learn more about the history of the characters and plots etc as listed in the synopsis. What I got was a diatribe fit for a therapist's office rather than anything entertaining or informative. I have listened to all the books 3 times, and thought I would try another angle rather than starting over again (I listen while I paint) so bought this.....bad idea, Diana Gabaldon, is a fantastic entertaining writer, but should leave the narration to someone else, and the personal rambling for a private journal instead of a published book.....
the only reason why there is more than one star for 'overall' and 'performance', is because of Davina Porter's narration. However even her portion she was required to read was literally like an Outlander series cliffsnotes book, complete with recycled excerpts from previous performances, rather than a more in depth look beyond the main books, which is what I had expected and hoped for....an absolute disappointment.
10 of 14 people found this review helpful
I love your books Diana but I'm glad you didn't read them yourself. We all have unique talents and yours is writing!
3 of 4 people found this review helpful
Overall, I enjoyed this book. I enjoyed particularly the synopses of the books in the series. These were narrated by Davinia Porter who is one of my favorite narrators. There were spoilers, but I expected them. It would be difficult to outline the book without revealing the plot.
The rest of the book was interesting. It was mostly about the process of researching and writing the Outlander series and Ms. Gabaldon's views on writing in general.
My biggest criticism of the book is the pace of Ms. Gabaldon's narration. She goes really fast. I found it difficult to casually listen as I would lose my place if my attention lapsed for a moment. Some of this may be due to her experience as a volunteer narrator of books for people with visual impairments. Many of these are apparently intentionally narrated very quickly.
I did like this book enough to download the next volume which deals with the next four books in the Outlander series.
Is there anything you would change about this book?
Yes, for it not to be them same stuff
If you’ve listened to books by Diana Gabaldon before, how does this one compare?
that is it if you have read her outlander books this one is a waste
Any additional comments?
Diana, Please create new books to do with the outlanderI was so disappointed and I just love what you have done before this book
Would you try another book from Diana Gabaldon and/or Davina Porter and Diana Gabaldon ?
I would definitely try another book. Love the reader.
Who was your favorite character and why?
Of course the leading lady and her 1800th century hubby.
What about Davina Porter and Diana Gabaldon ’s performance did you like?
What would have made this romance irresistible?
Any additional comments?
I wish I hadn't purchased the book. It was unnecessary.