Outlander Read-Along: Week 5

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Outlander Read-Along Button

Can you believe the read-along is almost over? I’m tempted to just finish the book now, so I can be done with it lol. You can find the rest of the posts, and this week’s questions here.

1. We are now settled into life at Lallybroch. What are your impressions of this place, and Ian and Jenny Murray? How do the stories of Jamie’s life here growing up shape your feelings toward him?

I love the idea of living at Lallybroch, and I almost wish the majority of the book were set here. Something about period dramas just grabs me, I guess. I love to think that I would do well living in that time period, and maybe someday I’ll get around to doing a reenactment or something – it would be so much fun! The stories of Jamie’s childhood mostly just gave me more reasons to believe him being the way he is – it doesn’t really change the way I feel about him, just makes me understand why he feels justified. I feel like if I met him in real life now, I could at least agree to disagree on most things, instead of feeling like I needed to do something about it, you know?


2. What do you think of the story of what really happened between Jenny and Jack Randall? Could you have been as bold as Jenny? Does this change your understanding of Randall?

I honestly don’t know if I could do what Jenny did. I hate the idea of high-stress situations, but at the same time, I tend to keep a cool head, and be pretty reliable when they do happen. I’ve never been in such an awful situation as that though, so I don’t know what I would do. I wouldn’t say it changed my understanding of Randall – I always saw him as a petty, disgusting little sh*t, and he still is.

3. For the second time, we see Claire warning a Fraser about future events. Do you think this is wise? Or does this mess with history/the space-time continuum/the natural order of things?

NO! This is definitely NOT wise! Unless she knows for sure the Frasers survive (which she doesn’t) she shouldn’t be altering events at all! And THANK YOU for bringing it up, because we haven’t even talked about what happens now because she has changed so much! If this were a Weeping Angel kind of thing where you get zapped into the past and there is no possible way to get back, I could understand Claire’s actions, but she continually hopes to get back, and yet still does things that could change the future, meaning there may not be a future to get back to! As Heidi pointed out in the comments last week, H.G. Wells publishedThe Time Machine in 1888 (thanks for the date there, I didn’t know it, but I wondered if it was pre-Claire’s present!) and it was all the rage at the time, so even if Claire hadn’t read it, she should know the premise, and some basic details on the theory of time travel! And yet, she trots around the past all LA-DI-DA I DON’T CARE! and it bugs the heck out of me!

Sorry. Endrant now lol.

4. Do you consider Claire brave or foolish for going after Jamie? Would you be courageous enough to go into enemy territory to try and save the man you love?

I think it was very brave of Claire to try, and I think she had some chances of succeeding simply because she is from the future, knows a bit more about the world in general, and has a much more forward view of what women can do than most of the men guarding the prison – act a little silly and bat your eyelashes at them, and in that time they’d probably do whatever you wanted. I’d like to think I’d do the same, but I really don’t know. That’s another situation that you don’t know until you’re in it what you’re really made of, I think.


5. Jamie makes a gut-wrenching decision in Chapter 35. Do you blame Claire for putting him in that position? What kinds of repurcussions do you expect?

I think it was a stupid decision, but I don’t blame Claire. I think she did what she thought was best and that’s all we can possibly do in any situation. I expect if she ever does manage to break him out (which I’m sure she will) instead of thanking her for it, he’ll just beat her again, and I’ll hate him even more for not understanding. I don’t have much faith in him at this point, after the last beating over a misunderstanding, and I expect instead of being grateful, he’ll wish she’d never butted in and just let him hang. Silly stupid man!


There we are! One more week!

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15 Responses to “Outlander Read-Along: Week 5”

  1. I have anxiety attacks just thinking of Jenny and what she had to do! There is no way I could have been as brave as she was…

    -Jac @ For Love and Books

    • Anne says:

      I feel like it could go either way with me – I just really don’t know! But, I don’t think there’s any problem with either reaction. Well, okay that’s the wrong wording, because in one scenario you’re hurt, and in the other you’re not, but… I don’t know how to put it. I think it was very brave of Jenny to do what she did, but also that she is unusual, and it’s okay to not be that brave. Does that make sense?

  2. Agree – it’d be lovely if the entire book could be set at Lallybroch! Of course, then there’d really be no point to the book, but it’d certainly be a much nicer, more pleasant story.

    Interesting perspective on how Claire’s actions will most likely result in a beating. Of course, I think it’s warranted in this case, but I’m not a huge Claire fan. 😉

    • Anne says:

      I can understand why not! She certainly makes some awful decisions! I honestly don’t care overmuch for her myself, but I don’t think she’s as awful as some people do either. I was surprised actually, at how much I don’t care about so many parts of the book… It’s like I’m the neutral middle ground, which wouldn’t keep me interested enough to keep reading if it weren’t for the read-along. Ah well, the point is that I’ve at least tried the book, right?

  3. Lauren says:

    You know, I didn’t even really think about the changing history thing with Claire until someone brought it up. The thing is that every moment she’s there, Claire could be changing something crucial in the future. It’s a huge mind puzzle! Interested to see whether DG pursue’s this at all.

    • Anne says:

      Yeah, I have a friend who actively avoids time-travel stories because they “make her brain hurt!” lol. I find the puzzle just that much more interesting, and it’s the thing I love most about time travel stories, which is why I’m kind of disappointed she doesn’t deal with it, you know?

  4. Jae says:

    I think trying to alter the future always leads to bad things. Then again, telling Jenny to plant potatoes isn’t going to change that much. The war and famine will still come, they’ll just have more food than people who weren’t prepared. But I’m just optimistic because I don’t want anything more bad to happen to their family. But seeing as how there are so many sequels, it seems like they’re in for one thing after another.

    • Anne says:

      That’s just it – we don’t know what could or couldn’t change the future! What if, by planting potatoes, someone in the family who was supposed to die of starvation ends up living. They could be the one person who makes a difference between the “right” side winning or losing! That’s why it’s called “the butterfly effect” – the tiniest little thing, like killing a butterfly, can completely change the world! (Sorry to get so technical, I’m a huge an of time travel, so I geek out over it a bit lol) And yes, I imagine they’re in for quite a lot, with so many books. Ah well, at least there’s plenty to read, right?

  5. Kristilyn (Reading in Winter) says:

    I’m not so sure if it’s just Claire having a lackadaisical attitude about telling people the future, but she’s really come to care for Jamie and his family and just wants them to be safe. I am very interested to see how her actions play out in future books, though!

    I’m interested to read the rest … so many things happening that I’m excited to see how it all plays out!

    • Anne says:

      Even if she’s doing it to keep them safe, it should be a concern – what if, by telling them something, she actually endangers them more? I don’t know, I just feel like time-travel is so complicated that you shouldn’t try to mess with anything that could change the future, just in case, because you can’t know all the outcomes.

      You’ll have to let me know how the rest are – I’m only interested enough to read the synopsis’s, really, this book just didn’t appeal to me as much as I’d hoped it would.

  6. I thought she was brave and heart-sick going after Jamie. She is all in.

  7. Kristilyn (Reading in Winter) says:

    I’m so interested to figure out the repercussions of Claire telling bits of the future … is it going to affect it in any way??

    I agree that Claire did the only thing she could do when Jamie was thrown in prison! I hope he doesn’t get mad at her for it!

  8. I think I’m probably the only weirdo that was a little bored by Lollybroch. I like the action of the castle much better, and even the time spent in the woods. Lollybroch seems nice, but it was a struggle to get through for me.

    • Anne says:

      I can see why you would get bored, it’s easily the slowest part of the book. I really only enjoyed it because I like a little slowness in my historical romance, which this really is.

  9. Heidi says:

    Hahaha, your time travel rant makes me really happy. I actually watched the old Time Machine movie just this week! Surprisingly pretty good (better than the 2002 one anyway imho). I agree, I would have been perfectly happy if this book were more of a period drama feel and took place entirely at Lallybroch–heck, I’d be perfectly happy if the main characters were Ian and Jenny instead of Jamie and Claire!

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