For twenty years Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones … about a love that transcends the boundaries of time … and about James Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his….
Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart … in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising … and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves.
Miss Riki’s Review:
Diana Gabaldon had me hooked with the first book in the Outlander series, and her second novel does not disappoint. It begins in an unexpected place in time, but quickly establishes the necessity of the twist and had me intrigued from page one. I really enjoyed the jump in time that introduces us to Claire’s sassy and smart daughter Brianna and their astute companion Roger. There’s a budding romance there in itself that has me excited, but after their brief introduction, Gabaldon drops us right back into the timeless story of Claire and Jamie.
Dragonfly in Amber is even stronger as a historical novel than the first in the series. Spending a lot of time in Paris, it is full of political intrigue and the underhanded motivations of those involved, and in trying to thwart the uprising that they know is to come, there’s high stakes for Claire and Jamie. Despite being heavy on the history and more involved in that way, the plot never wavers from the beautiful love story of Claire and Jaime that readers have come to love. There’s also a wonderful familial storyline with Jamie’s sister Jenny and her husband Ian. There’s deep love and understanding in this family and the respite from trial and trauma that Jamie finds in their home is tender and joyful.
Towards the end of this novel the time travel element is once again revisited and explained in a little more detail. Gabaldon brings up some very interesting questions about altering the course of the future as you know it to play out, and plays with that idea quite a bit in this book. Claire struggles with stopping the uprising and backing her husband Jamie, and yet making sure that history is not altered in such a way that her first husband Frank is erased completely. She’s torn in her alliances and it makes for an excellent conflict.
Dragonfly in Amber does end on a cliffhanger of sorts, so readers will definitely want to have book three, Voyager, on hand to find out what happens next. I know I do!
I loved this book every bit as much as the first in the series and continue to be awed by Gabaldon’s skill in bringing this world to life. I’m captivated by the romance and intrigued by the political implications of the war. Adding in the element of time travel and my desire to see how the future plays out for Claire’s daughter, and I’m fairly hooked on this series.