Friday, June 11, 2010

I finished reading Outlander by Diana Gabaldon last night. Usually I have much more concrete ideas about a book once I’ve finished it, but I find that I have been steadfastly ambivalent about this book throughout my reading experience.

In the beginning I did have some trouble getting through it. It’s not so much that it moved slowly, but there was something that I just had to push through. After the first 200 pages or so, reading it got easier and I got more into the story.

A lot of people have expressed an intense dislike toward the main character, Claire. While I found her annoying at times, her personality did not grate on me as it appears to have done on many other readers.

One of my issues with this book may be that it is written in first person. I don’t generally have any issues with that, but I feel like a novel written in first person (especially one this long) needs to be exceptionally written and this just wasn’t. It’s not that Gabaldon’s writing is horrendous, it’s just that I’m not convinced that it is really strong enough to carry the story the way in which she wrote it.

The story is a good one. Not totally my thing, but interesting. I went into it not realizing that it was really a romance, so that sort of threw me for a loop and could have contributed to my difficulties reading it earlier on. Once you recognize that it’s a romance and resign yourself to that, it’s a lot easier to get into the story and try to get to know the characters.

There are 8 books in this series. I think I might check out the next from the library (if I can ever get over that irrational fear) and see how I feel about it. I like some of the characters and the general overarching story enough to try the next book, but I’m not committing myself to reading the whole series. I’m not sure I have the time or the patience to do so. There are way too many other books on my list begging to be read.


  1. I enjoyed Outlander, but I read about one and a half more books from the series before I completely lost interest. Admittedly, this was something like 6 years ago, and I had the attention span of a gnat, so...maybe you'll do better? Good luck!

  2. Hehe. I don't have a great attention span either, but I do have a sort of compulsion when it comes to finishing books. Let's hope for my sake that either I like the series enough to continue reading, or that that compulsion doesn't extend to full series.