The “Outlander” series is not one that I was ever so excited to read but rather one that has grown on me. This is the third installment and I have been following Claire and Jamie all the way through their rough journey to find each other, lose each other and then find each other again. This is a love story that has very strong grounds and is being fed and growing over the years, instead of weakening as someone might expect. It is so strong, that twenty years after Culloden, Claire decides to leave yer daughter in the present time and go back to find Jamie.
Strange as it may seem, Claire and her daughter Brianna, on their trip to Scotland, realize that Jamie Frazer did not die at Culloden. He is not buried with the rest of his men or with other Jacobites close by to Culloden field. It was so that all survivors from the battlefield in Culloden were gathered in a farm house waiting for their fate. John Randal is dead and Jamie is fatally wounded, but when it comes to writing down the name of each captured man, before executing him, Harold Grey, Earl of Melton who is in charge of all this, realizes that the man in front of him is ‘Red Jamie’, a wanted man, but also the man that spared his brother’s life. So instead of shooting him, he sends him home to die of his wounds.
Torn between her daughter and Jamie, Claire cannot take a decision lighthearted. Knowing that Bree is safe with Roger, she finally decides to go back to Jamie, a man she thought to have died in Culloden. But with the new data in light and the fact that he died many many years later, she has hope. Painful as it is to travel back in time, she makes the journey through the stones and goes to Edinburgh, to find Jamie twenty years older and worrying whether he may want her back. Of course he does, he never though he’d see her again, and this surprise is the best present he would hope for!
The two lovers are older now. They have spend a life away from each other, meeting people and doing so many more things in the course of those twenty years. Even so, their passion and love for each other never fainted. It was still there, even if they thought the other one dead. Claire is no longer a nurse. She has studied and has become a doctor now. She has an important position in the hospital she works and has much more experience with operations and illnesses. She even brought some penicillin with her on the trip to the past, which proves to be really helpful in the course of time.
Jamie has been through iron and fire all these twenty years. Having in mind that he may never see Claire or his unborn child, he has suffered a lot, but he was focused on his family and his people. He has done everything he could in order to protect them. He even went to jail to protect them and prison is never easy. But he made friends there, some loyal companions and some important friends. When he was free again, hiding as he was, he still tried to protect everyone depending on him, being himself all the time, taking risks he could take and turning a bit on the dark side. When he saw Claire in front of him, so out of the blue he knew that he was not the same man she left all those years before. So he was worried if she’d want him back, the new him.
Both characters were loyal to themselves, only a bit more mature now, given that they are at their forties now. Their choices are more mature now, but they are still driven by their love for each other and the people around them. It is therefore expected to have a bit of jealousy in there, from both sides. Only that Jamie knew exactly who he was jealous of, the same man he was in the previous books, but Claire finds herself jealous of much more people, people she never expected herself to be. Well, she couldn’t expect him to become a monk, could she?
Having that said, I’m not so crazy seeing everyone in this series wanting Jamie’s body. I get it. He is handsome. He is tall and fierce and kind to his people. He is brave and all, but please, not all English men are gay and want Jamie! That’s one part I cannot accept. Neither the fact that Jamie somehow responds to their love out of his own will. Especially not after what he went through with Randal and how he reacted to the whole situation. It just doesn’t fit.
Even so, I will continue reading the series, because I want to know what happens next! My OCD won’t let me drop on the series. I have to finish it. I have to know what happens next!