A World War II nurse falls through a time hole and ends up in historic Scotland, having to survive in a war-ridden time when her accent (she’s English) marks her as a possible spy or an enemy. And amidst it all she finds love with a handsome man who loves her unconditionally. And, no, there isn’t a happy ending.
This is the plot of “Outlander,” Starz network’s recent big hit series. It’s based on a highly-acclaimed bestselling book series (the first book is called “Outlander”) that has eight books published. The series has been published in 26 countries and in 23 languages. And the author? Diana Gabaldon, a Mexican-American writer from Arizona who’s been named one of Hollywood’s 25 Most Powerful Authors.
I haven’t watched the show, but I’ve been working my way through the books. This is not the kind of reading material that usually appeals to me. Honestly, I picked up the first book as a free ebook from Amazon when one of the next books in the series was released. “Outlander,” the first book in the series, is exceptional. The main character is strong and focused… until she isn’t. It’s believable, for a time-traveling themed book. The next few books are just okay. (Be warned, you MUST read the books in order.)
How did the series come about? In her own words:
The OUTLANDER series started by accident, when I decided to write a novel for practice, in order to:
- Learn what it took to write a novel, and
- To decide whether I really wanted to do that for real.
More about her, also from her bio page:
Dr. Gabaldon holds three degrees in science: Zoology, Marine Biology, and a Ph.D. in Quantitative Behavioral Ecology, (plus an honorary degree as Doctor of Humane Letters, which entitles her to be “Diana Gabaldon, Ph.D., D.H.L.” She supposes this is better than “Diana Gabaldon, Phd.X,”) and spent a dozen years as a university professor with an expertise in scientific computation before beginning to write fiction.
The book is definitely worth a read. And if you don’t feel like reading, check out the series; more info on the show’s page on Starz.
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