A book adapted into a film/series: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

I love this book. Love this book. And let me repeat, I love this book. It may not be the most well-written, but it has characters that you manage to fall in love with and a style that I thoroughly enjoyed reading. I originally read it, and I ripped through it in a day. Then had to go back and reread it the next day. It’s a series, as Outlander was initially published back in 1991, but I haven’t finished all of them, so I won’t go past the first book for the purposes of this post.

Outlander has been around as a TV show for several years and I have only just caught up. Season 5 dropped yesterday, and let me tell you; I shed tears. Outlander is a STARS production, and I’ll assure you, I don’t think they know how to make a bad show (re Black Sails).

For the uninitiated, Outlander tells the story of Claire Randall (nee Beecham) who travels around in time, though many people will be quick to point out that this is a romance story. And yes, it very much is. The story starts in 1945 at the end of World War Two. Claire has been a Combat Nurse, and her husband Frank has been away also. Deciding that they need to get to know each other again they go for a mini break up to Inverness in Scotland.

Claire manages to stumble back in time to 18th Century Scotland, the year of 1743 where she meets the young Jamie Fraser. And let me tell you – this is a romance for the ages (with an awful lot of sex thrown in for good measure). Despite the story focusing on the romance and the like, the novel touches on a whole heap of Scottish history, with the Uprising, the Clan system and the Battle of Culloden. This isn’t something I know a great deal about, so I was Googling along the way. The rest of the novels in the series move on to other historical events of the time – and this period is rich with historical events.

For me, it was the characters that truly made this book. Claire is a brilliant view of the way things were during 18th century Scotland. Jamie is, well, he’s Jamie. You end up feeling for Frank when he realises his wife is missing, and his ancestor Black Jack Randall, well I’m quite sure you CAN wait to make his acquaintance. Throw the clansmen and a few other trouble makers into the mix and you come out with a bloody good story.

 I recommend this for someone who has a quiet afternoon in winter, with a heater going, a blanket and a nice warm drink. Wrap up. You’re going to enjoy it. And once you’ve met everyone –  meet them all for a second time to just Netflix and chill.

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