Book - 1991
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Unrivaled storytelling. Unforgettable characters. Rich historical detail. These are the hallmarks of Diana Gabaldon's work. Her New York Times bestselling Outlander novels have earned the praise of critics and captured the hearts of millions of fans. Here is the story that started it all, introducing two remarkable characters, Claire Beauchamp Randall and Jamie Fraser, in a spellbinding novel of passion and history that combines exhilarating adventure with a love story for the ages.

One of the top ten best-loved novels in America, as seen on PBS's The Great American Read !

Scottish Highlands, 1945. Claire Randall, a former British combat nurse, is just back from the war and reunited with her husband on a second honeymoon when she walks through a standing stone in one of the ancient circles that dot the British Isles. Suddenly she is a Sassenach--an "outlander"--in a Scotland torn by war and raiding clans in the year of Our Lord . . . 1743.

Claire is catapulted into the intrigues of a world that threatens her life, and may shatter her heart. Marooned amid danger, passion, and violence, Claire learns her only chance of safety lies in Jamie Fraser, a gallant young Scots warrior. What begins in compulsion becomes urgent need, and Claire finds herself torn between two very different men, in two irreconcilable lives.

Praise for Diana Gabaldon's Outlander novels

"Marvelous and fantastic adventures, romance, sex . . . perfect escape reading." -- San Francisco Chronicle , on Outlander

"History comes deliciously alive on the page." --New York Daily News , on Outlander

"Gabaldon is a born storyteller. . . . The pages practically turn themselves." -- The Arizona Republic , on Dragonfly in Amber

"Triumphant . . . Her use of historical detail and a truly adult love story confirm Gabaldon as a superior writer." -- Publishers Weekly , on Voyager

"Unforgettable characters . . . richly embroidered with historical detail." -- The Cincinnati Post , on Drums of Autumn

"A grand adventure written on a canvas that probes the heart, weighs the soul and measures the human spirit across [centuries]." --CNN , on The Fiery Cross

"The large scope of the novel allows Gabaldon to do what she does best, paint in exquisite detail the lives of her characters." -- Booklist , on A Breath of Snow and Ashes

"Features all the passion and swashbuckling that fans of this historical fantasy series have come to expect." -- People , on Written in My Own Heart's Blood
Publisher: New York, N.Y. : Delacorte Press, 1991
Characteristics: 627 p. ; 25 cm
ISBN: 9780385302302
0385302304 (hc)


From Library Staff

1991 -- Hellooooo, Jamie (swoon) and hearts have been aflutter since. Julia Alvarez captured the immigrant experience with "How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent" and a generation got defined with Coupland's "Generation X."

List - Staff Dream Dates
JeffcoBooks Feb 13, 2019

It's not surprising we had multiple submissions for first dates with Jamie Fraser.

One staff member said, "He is tall, handsome and has a glorious Scottish accent. You could ask him his (outrageously detailed) Scottish family history and listen for hours to that brogue…." Another staf... Read More »

List - Join the Cult
JeffcoBooks Sep 06, 2018

Gabaldon does an impressive job of immersing the reader in her world, which is impeccably researched, and it’s one of a very few series that I contemplate re-reading before the latest installment comes out (it may not happen, but I like to think I have the time to revisit the series before diving... Read More »

List - Explore Other Worlds
JeffcoBooks Oct 29, 2018

Explore the Scottish countryside in this time travelling, bestselling, romance adventure.

2. Also a television series, Gabaldon's Outlander series combines time travel, romance, intrigue and action in one it's-past-my-bed-time-but-just-one-more-page package.

From the critics

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Jul 14, 2019

Lengthy and disjointed (in some parts of the book). Overdramatized in others, where i found myself asking - another thing happened? If it were shorter I would consider reading the rest of the series, but at 850 pages it’s not worth my time.

May 28, 2019

I liked this book more after seeing the TV series and rereading it the second time. It is indeed a very long book but the story moves along and never bogs down. The heroine Claire, who does not choose to be transported to 18th century Scotland, is one tough lady. I admire her intelligence, spunk, resourcefulness, inner strength, and resilience. This is not by any means a bodice ripper story. In fact, it is more than a love story. It's a story of survival and resilience. The author transports you to 18th century Scotland, portraying the harsh, violent, dangerous and brutal world of the conflict between the Scots and English. She never sugarcoats those times. It was a very exciting and thought provoking experience reading this novel following a 20th century world war nurse coping and adjusting to those perilous times in Scotland. I learned a lot about Scottish clan life too. The author certainly did her homework. And hero Jamie Fraser is truly a remarkable, admirable man, and the love he has for Claire is very deep. And I disagree with others' comments here that this book had graphic sex scenes. On the contrary, it's the TV series that has more graphic sex scenes. Finally, Black Jack Randall is one of the cruelest, despicable villains ever written.

May 01, 2019

You will need LOTS of time to read this book as it's very thick with small print.

Mar 31, 2019

The first book in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon, Outlander follows Claire Randall as she travels to Scotland 1743 during the war between the Scottish and British. It is a historical romance novel and has been adapted into a television show of the same name, which I love very dearly. This is the only book in the series that I've read so far, but it was amazing and beware, there is a lot of sexual content. Outlander is an adult series with many scenes expressing sexuality. However, it is definitely one that I recommend, along with the tv show because of the incredible adaptation it is. It is incredibly faithful to the book, making both elements of media a need to see and read. 5/5 Stars. @SeraphinaWilliams of the Hamilton Public Library Teen Review Board

Mar 27, 2019

Book 1 in the Outlander series

Mar 02, 2019

The best Historical Romance of all time!

Feb 20, 2019

An epic adventure from start to finish!

Feb 13, 2019

Good. Parts were slow but the story line sucks you in.

Dec 22, 2018

Read in private when time allows

Dec 05, 2018

A great first book in the series! A long read but hard to put down. If you have watch the t.v. series, the book very closely matches it but the book is much better like most adapted books are. I highly recommend this read, it's funny, adventurous, emotional, sad, horrible and romantic all rolled up into one book! Enjoy!

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Add a Quote
Aug 26, 2016

“Ye are Blood of my Blood, and Bone of my Bone,
I give ye my Body, that we Two might be One.
I give ye my Spirit, 'til our Life shall be Done.”

Jun 21, 2016

Ye are Blood of my Blood, and Bone of my Bone,
I give ye my Body, that we Two might be One.
I give ye my Spirit, 'til our Life shall be Done.”

Jun 18, 2015

“Now, then. What does ‘fucking’ mean?”

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" Hanovers and Stuarts? To me, these were still no more than names on a chart on the schoolroom wall. What were they, compared with an unthinkable evil like Hitler's Reich? It made a difference to those who lived under the kings, I supposed, though the differences might seem trivial to me. Still, when had the right to live as one wished ever been trivial? Was a struggle to choose one's own destiny less worthwhile than the necessity to stop a great evil?"-Claire

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" Aye, I believe ye, Sassenach. But it would ha' been a good deal easier if you'd only been a witch."-Jamie

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" Ye need not be scairt of me. Nor of anyone here, so long as I'm with ye."-Jamie

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" I wanted ye from the first time I saw ye-but I loved ye when you wept in my arms and let me comfort you, that first time at Leoch."-Jamie

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" For where all love is, the speaking is unnecessary. It is all. It is undying. And it is enough."-Claire

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

" There are things that I canna tell you, at least not yet. And I'll ask nothing of ye that ye canna give me. But what I would ask of ye-when you do tell me something, let it be the truth. And I'll promise ye the same. We have nothing now between us, save-respect, perhaps. And I think that respect has maybe room for secrets, but not for lies. Do ye agree?"-Jamie

M_ALCOTT Sep 29, 2014

"Jesus H. Roosevelt Christ."-Claire

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Add Age Suitability
Apr 28, 2017

katie_bos thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

May 20, 2016

heidisue78 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Aug 14, 2015

RaRaJade thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Jun 30, 2015

hippo_crates thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Jun 08, 2015

BritleeW thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Jan 07, 2015

Anistasya thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

Oct 07, 2014

AusTex78729 thinks this title is suitable for 16 years and over

PBnuffsaid Jul 27, 2014

PBnuffsaid thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over

Feb 12, 2014

RLoewens thinks this title is suitable for 18 years and over


Add Notices
Jan 07, 2015

Sexual Content: Although not explicit, there is quite a lot of sex in this book (mostly between consenting & married adults). There is one instance rape which, while not shown explicitly, may still be disturbing to some readers.

Jan 07, 2015

Violence: 18th century Scotland is a grimy and violent place. Claire is a healer, so sees her fair share of blood and gore. Violence is not too explicit, however, and most of the focus is on the impact of violence on those who survive it.

PBnuffsaid Jul 27, 2014

Sexual Content: Some sexual scenes


Add a Summary
mickaylasnana May 11, 2011

English nurse Claire Beauchamp Randall and husband Frank take a second honeymoon in the Scottish Highlands in 1945. When Claire walks through a cleft stone in an ancient henge, she's somehow transported to 1743. She encounters Frank's evil ancestor, British captain Jonathan "Black Jack" Randall, and is adopted by another clan. Claire nurses young soldier James Fraser, a gallant, merry redhead, and the two begin a romance, seeing each other through many perilous, swashbuckling adventures involving Black Jack. Scenes of the Highlanders' daily life blend poignant emotions with Scottish wit and humor. Eventually Sassenach (outlander) Claire finds a chance to return to 1945, and must choose between distant memories of Frank and her happy, uncomplicated existence with Jamie.

EPLPicks_Teen Apr 07, 2010

In Scotland with her husband on a second honeymoon after World War II, Claire enters a circle of stones and is transported back to the Battle of Culloden 200 years earlier, where she must marry a Scot to save her husband

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