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Outlander Audiobook

Outlander: Outlander, Book 1

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential: Mix equal parts historic fiction, adventure, and romance. Add a dash of time travel. Blend with pitch-perfect narration. And you'll understand why Outlander is an all-time favorite among Audible listeners. Whether she's giving voice to the former World War II nurse Claire or the 18th Century Scottish warrior Jamie, Davina Porter brings a magical intimacy to this epic tale. --Steve Feldberg

Publisher's Summary

This stunning blend of historical romance and time traveling adventure has captured the hearts of millions of readers around the world and catapulted author Diana Gabaldon to the top of the New York Times best seller list. Outlander introduces an exhilarating world of heroism and breathtaking thrills as one woman is torn between past and present, passion and love.

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.

What the Critics Say

"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)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.5 (40442 )
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4.7 (32675 )
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Joel NEWPORT BEACH, CA, United States 10-14-14
    Joel NEWPORT BEACH, CA, United States 10-14-14 Member Since 2011

    Joel Szerlip

    HELPFUL VOTES
    272
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    "Historical Fiction Set in a Time Travel Series"

    After Game of Thrones, it was just a matter of time before a long fantasy series would get transitioned into a TV series. Outlander is that next series. I purchased Outlander to read before watching the show and in short, I'm glad I did.

    I really wasn't sure what to expect. The trailers for the show made it seem like an action heavy time travel show. The book and its many variations of covers look more like a romance novel. In essence its a little bit of both. The novel follows Claire who travels back in time to 1757 in Scotland. What transpires is literally part love story part fantasy epic. There were moments in Outlander that I was captivated, and other times that I wasn't sure what all the praise was all about.

    The book starts off really strong. Claire is lost in a world she's not familiar with and gets herself into quite a bit of trouble. Things do meander towards the middle portions and then come to a huge climax with a good portion of the book still remaining. I probably haven't mentioned but this isn't a short weekend read. Coming in over 30 hrs on the audio version there were times that the drives flew by and others when the book took its time.

    Outlander might be a bit mushy for my taste, but it was still a really entertaining read. I found the characters interesting, but the world of Scotland in 1757 stole the show for me. Its a fascinating time in history, and one that I know so little about. You can see that future books are going to lean heavily on the historical events of that time period and for me that might be the books crowning achievement. Although not as steadfast as I was with Game of Thrones I think I will continue on with the series to see what trouble Claire gets herself into next.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Denise Valencia, CA, United States 10-14-14
    Denise Valencia, CA, United States 10-14-14 Member Since 2007

    Native Californian, but lived in TX for 2.5 yrs where I joined a neighborhood book club and never looked back! I listen and read books! After 5 years of raving about audiobooks, I finally got my husband hooked!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    19
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    "2nd listen even better than the first!"

    I first read this in 2009 and liked it but at the time didn't want to get committed to such a huge series, so I stopped after Outlander. Fast forward to 2014 Starz Outlander series and I got hooked again. So.....I listened again. And it was better the second time. Davina Porter does an amazing job of accents and character distinction. I hate when narrators lower their voices too deep to sound "male". Davina doesn't do that. It is slightly lower but doesn't sound weird or unnatural. Her voices sound male without sounding ridiculous. It was an absolute pleasure to listen to her read the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amazon Customer 10-13-14 Member Since 2012
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    149
    13
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    Story
    "Just ok."
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Less frequency in the descriptive narrative of love-making between the main characters. The story line failed to flow smoothly from scene to scene as it had to stop to often for the personal encounters....especially when a man has been almost tortured to death; I would begin to get the sense of urgency, despair and the motivation to endure and then...stop. Lost some of the realism for me.


    Has Outlander turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, I've read other time-travel stories with great enjoyment - even with the underlining romance.


    Would you listen to another book narrated by Davina Porter?

    I thought Davina did well with her narrative.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Marek 10-11-14
    M. Marek 10-11-14 Member Since 2013

    Picky Mama

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    13
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Lots of romance but not a great story"
    Would you try another book from Diana Gabaldon and/or Davina Porter?

    Probably not


    Would you ever listen to anything by Diana Gabaldon again?

    Probably not


    What about Davina Porter’s performance did you like?

    The reading was a well cadenced and melodious.


    What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

    Disappointment. This book was recommended by a friend. It is a sweet romance story but hardly novel worthy.


    Any additional comments?

    The cadence of this book seemed to be: sex, sex, here solve this quick problem, sex, sex she's on trial, sex, sex, he's missing, he's buggered, he's dying, sex and sex. There was not much meat of a real story.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    f_rele Vantaa, Finland 10-09-14
    f_rele Vantaa, Finland 10-09-14 Member Since 2016
    HELPFUL VOTES
    5
    ratings
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    49
    4
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    "Felt like erotic paperback novel"
    What disappointed you about Outlander?

    Detailed love making scenes, book was certainly not written for male audience (I kind of knew this beforehand, but still gave this book a go), not so much of a story as it was about main character describing how she feels about this and that. Many missed opportunities to make the story interesting.


    Has Outlander turned you off from other books in this genre?

    No, not completely, but I will certainly steer completely away from books by this author.


    Did the narration match the pace of the story?

    Narration was good.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    Book was interesting up until the repetitive love making scenes started.


    Any additional comments?

    Forced my self to listen to the end hoping there would be something worth the wait, but got disappointed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Susan Finch Albuquerque, NM 10-09-14
    Susan Finch Albuquerque, NM 10-09-14

    Say something about yourself!

    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
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    "I've listened to it three times!"
    Where does Outlander rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    Well it is at the top. I'm enchanted with this story and Davina Porter is the best.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Outlander?

    The wedding and Claire's major life decision. I do not want to give away the plot. I love the detail, the feelings, and I truly cared about the characters.


    What about Davina Porter’s performance did you like?

    She transitions her voice well between characters. She reflects feeling in her voice.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Best love story ever.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    EWashington 10-08-14
    EWashington 10-08-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    9
    2
    Overall
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    Story
    "THE READER"
    What disappointed you about Outlander?

    OH THE STORY IS GREAT BUT THE READER IS OLD, IT DOESN'T APPEAL AT ALL


    What did you like best about this story?

    CAN'T GET PASS THE READER


    What didn’t you like about Davina Porter’s performance?

    SHE SOUNDS LIKE AN OLD WOMAN AND ITS DOES NOT DRAG YOU INTO THE STORY AND MAKE YOU WANT TO BE APART OF IT.


    You didn’t love this book... but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    THE BOOK IS GREAT i PROBABLY WILL RETURN IT i CAN'T LISTEN TO IT, i HAVEN'T GOTTEN PASS THE FIRST CHAPTER.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Melanie Margraf 10-08-14
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Absolutely amazing book! Cannot get enough!"
    Would you listen to Outlander again? Why?

    Yes, It is an amazing book the first read through but I feel that reading it again would show me little things I missed the first time.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    SerafimaE 10-07-14
    SerafimaE 10-07-14 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    15
    1
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    Performance
    Story
    "Best Narrator I have Ever Listened To"
    What made the experience of listening to Outlander the most enjoyable?

    Davina Porter is the best narrator I have ever listened to! The way she brings Diana Gabaldon's words to life is incredible. Her diction, pronunciation, and acting is amazing. She doesn't take away from the image you build of your characters as you read/listen to the book.


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

    I enjoy listening to the audiobook while I read the book. So the narrator helps immensely with all the words that I couldn't/wouldn't know how to even fathom the pronunciation of.


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

    I did find myself laughing...and shedding a tear involuntarily.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kriten Rio Linda, CA, United States 10-07-14
    Kriten Rio Linda, CA, United States 10-07-14 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    70
    4
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "awesome.."
    Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

    I would recommned this book.. it has a little of everything


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Outlander?

    how Claire does not give up


    Have you listened to any of Davina Porter’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    My dear Claire


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • L
    BridgendUnited Kingdom
    10/1/06
    Overall
    "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.

    45 of 50 people found this review helpful
  • John
    United Kingdom
    12/2/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Get out of bed and get on with the story!"
    What would have made Outlander better?

    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.


    Would you ever listen to anything by Diana Gabaldon again?

    Emphatically not!


    Would you be willing to try another one of Davina Porter’s performances?

    Highly unlikely.


    If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Outlander?

    About 60% of it.


    Any additional comments?

    I can honestly say that nothing I have read has annoyed me more than this series.

    40 of 45 people found this review helpful
  • Sceptical Shopper
    UK
    3/6/12
    Overall
    "Entertaining romp"

    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.

    26 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • Alan
    Northwich, Cheshire, United Kingdom
    3/28/07
    Overall
    "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!

    31 of 35 people found this review helpful
  • Marcus H.
    Oxfordshire. United Kingdom
    9/14/12
    Overall
    "Clichéd chick-lit"

    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!

    26 of 30 people found this review helpful
  • Karen
    Douglas Water, Lanarkshire, United Kingdom
    5/10/07
    Overall
    "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.

    25 of 29 people found this review helpful
  • R
    Templeogue, Ireland
    2/27/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Terrible Story, Terrible Charactars"

    I found this book one of the worst books I have ever had the misfortune to purchase from Audible. The basic premise of the book is fine, however...... it completely lost me when the main characters new husband is basically forcing himself on her, she then decides that he is doing such a good job that it is not really rape after all.

    Similarly, when her husband beats her for wandering off and needing to be rescued she is first extremely put out. But after thinking about it for a while she decides it was probably for the best.

    This book is a wife beating rapists wet dream.

    9 of 10 people found this review helpful
  • Victoria
    High Wycombe, United Kingdom
    4/26/12
    Overall
    "Mind-numbingly dull"

    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.
    Dreadful!

    42 of 50 people found this review helpful
  • Stewart
    Manchester, United Kingdom
    11/3/11
    Overall
    "Excruciating!"

    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.

    20 of 24 people found this review helpful
  • Paul D
    Normandy, France
    12/1/13
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Eat your heart out Barbara Cartland!"
    What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

    Some degree of historical reality/accuracy is useful in a historical novel,.


    What was most disappointing about Diana Gabaldon’s story?

    Lacked any depth, just a bodice ripper using a historic setting - the Scottish highlands. No conception or the era or realistic characterization.


    Did Davina Porter do a good job differentiating each of the characters? How?

    No. Heroine, "oh gosh, I've time travelled, never mind."


    You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

    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.


    Any additional comments?

    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.

    19 of 23 people found this review helpful

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