Thursday, March 22, 2012

Time Travel Redux

"Gabaldon uses time travel primarily to allow a modern heroine, [but] this is basically a richly textured historical novel with an unusual and compelling love story."
Library Journal

"Great fun ...marvelous and fantastic adventures, romance, sex ...perfect escape reading!"
San Francisco Chronicle

After I wrote about the great time travel film, Hot-Tub Time Machine, Mary Rose sent me a very nice email and commented that HTTM "doesn't do the concept of time travel justice." Hmm, and I was just about to get into the jacuzzi and spill a Russian power beverage on the heating mechanism. (Of course, I'm kidding -- I don't have a jacuzzi.) Mary Rose recommended the time-travel worldbuilding in Diana Gabaldon's Outlander novels.

I've heard of these books and I didn't realize they were time-travel stories. I thought they were historical fantasies -- but isn't that what time travel is? So if you're looking for something to fill the gaping hole in your life while awaiting HTTM 2, you may want to bite into this more substantive series.

Outlander, (Outlander #1) - The 20th Anniversary edition was released last summer.

SUMMARY: The year is 1945. Claire Randall is traveling with her husband when she touches a boulder in one of the ancient stone circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is hurled back in time to a Scotland torn by war and raiding border clans in the year of our Lord 1743. Catapulted into the intrigues of lairds and spies that may threaten her life, she soon realizes that an alliance with James Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior, might be the only way to survive. Thus begins a work of unrivaled storytelling that has become a modern classic.

This book was followed by Dragonfly in Amber:
For twenty years Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones ... about a love that transcends the boundaries of time ... and about James Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his....

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart...
The other books in the series are:
Drums of Autumn 
The Fiery Cross
A Breath of Snow and Ashes
An Echo in the Bone

Written in My Own Heart's Blood with be released in 2013. To learn more about Diana Gabaldon and her time travel series, visit her website.

If I have time tomorrow, I'll blog about sluts and sluttery and sluttishness and current culture and slut-shaming and all that. But I have a crazy-making deadline and so I may have to put the important topic of fun girls on hold.


The theme is time: days, hours, weeks, years, minutes.

Just how cheezetastic is this song? Kelly Clarkson probably has nightmares about it.

This angsty tribute to Annie and Mitchell of Being Human really makes me miss this couple. It's set to 30 Seconds to Mars's version of "Bad Romance."

Here's something cheerful to counteract the angst.

And back to cheezetos territory.


Danny said...

Seriously!! Those books are absolutely fantastic!!! Gosh, you have to meet Jamie, he's so swoon worthy hotness!
How can you not have read these book?

Oh and .. although I insanely loved the first 4, the last ones were boring. And, I was such a big fan I even read them 3 times!

Marta said...

Hi, Danny! I don't know why I haven't read them. They just weren't on my radar. My favorite time travel story is probably Connie Willis's To Say Nothing of the Dog, which was funny, smart, delightful.

Willis's Doomsday Book was also a time travel book, alternately fantastic and maddening. Her editor needs to make her cut out the filler, but her writing can be heartrending and nervewracking.

Nicole the Weaver said...

I second Danny enthusiasm for the first several books. It really is too bad Jaimie is fictional! I also started getting bored of the more recent books. The history is too recent for me and now, in my mind, they will never die.

Danielle said...


You must, you must, you must! Honestly, if you trusted me on 'Fifty Shades' then *trust* me about 'Outlander'. Once you read about Highlander hunk, Jamie Fraser, you will never be the same again...

Marta said...

Hi, Nicole, thanks for your comment! I'll add the Outlander books to my TBR list.

Danny, thanks for the Tweet. Unfortunately I need the captcha to keep the stoopid spam from getting posted on my blog.

Dani, hokay, hokay, I'm convinced! Yes, I absolutely trust your opinion on books. Do you realized how huge Shades of Gray is in the US now? Everyone's heard of it, but I first heard of it from you!

Michelle Par said...

Diana Gabaldon is one of my absolute favorite authors, and her series is so fascinatingly diverse. I love what she says on her website about her books, about how they are very difficult to categorize by genre. They are most certainly romance, historical fiction, sci-fi/fantasy with the time travel (wait until you meet the prehistoric time traveler), and I don't know what else. Oh, mystery/detective story, of course.

They really are something. I don't have any problem with the later ones over the earlier ones, like some have said, but I do have to say that I have been reluctant to read the latest one, which is rare for me, because I don't want the characters to suffer any more. : ) I also love that Gabaldon has written a companion to the series (books 1 through 4, I think) to explain and give resources, since there is so much in her world.

Natalie (Mindful Musings) said...

Oh, Mitchell and Annie. I miss them too. I think series four definitely has potential, but after the series three finale and the series four premiere...getting used to everything has taken me a little while.