Alison's Reviews > The Outlandish Companion

The Outlandish Companion by Diana Gabaldon
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Mar 11, 11

Read from March 09 to 10, 2011

The Outlandish Companion is definitely for the lover of all things Outlander. A reader who has never laid eyes on Diana Gabaldon's series will no doubt find interest in the sections that delve into her writing technique and research, past career in academia, and the sprinkling of folk lore. But, I fear, the rest of the 600 page book will be lost on the non-lovers. Thankfully, I am a lover.

It has been quite a few years since I have read the first four books: Outlander, Dragonfly in Amber, Voyager, and Drums of Autumn. Part One is a synopsis of each book, whittled down to approximately 15 pages. I was able to get a general grasp of each book before I moved on to the more specifics, the why and the how behind every detail. Yes, you must be a lover to truly appreciate Jamie and Claire's horoscopes.

Part Two takes on the characters: Mushrooms, Onions, and Hard Nuts. Who fits into each category? I'll let you find out for yourself. Now maybe the most helpful section for me, the one section that would make me want to keep this book in my library, is the Cast of Characters. There are hundreds, thousands of characters in the Outlander universe and keeping them all straight is a chore. Every character is here in this book, explained in a short paragraph. This section is just perfect for when you are reading Drums of Autumn and don't quite remember how Jared Munro Fraser fits into Jamie's family tree. (He's a cousin.)

After Part Two you're going to delve into Family Trees (part three), Glossary and Pronunciation Guide (part four), both interesting and filled with tidbits of information you'd never know and will no doubt find very interesting once you do learn of them.

My next favorite section was Six, Research. I loved reading the back and forth between Diana Gabaldon and her many online friends and cohorts. Many give her insight and pose questions that challenges her writing, but in a way that would only make it better. Also, if you've ever considered writing historical fiction this section gives you a good idea about what you're in for...a second home, the library.

Part Seven was also a quick interesting read, Where Titles Come From and The Gabaldon Theory of Time Travel. Actually, as an avid reader of all things Outlandish I've never quite understood her theory in regards to time travel. This was a concise tutorial that will surely help me while reading upcoming books.

I haven't included every section, this review would be as long as one of Galadon's books if I did! I've only written about the ones I truly enjoyed reading. While some this companion wouldn't need to be read over and over again, there is a wealth of information that would be useful for the Outlander lover and fiend. The book is worth it's weight in gold (and gemstones) just for the section on characters.

Have an Outlandishly good time reading this, it is well worth the time!


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