Saturday, July 19, 2014

Written in My Own Heart's Blood

Title: Written in My Own Heart's Blood (Amazon)
Author: Diana Gabaldon
Series: Outlander, book 8
Genre: Historical Fiction
Published: 2014
Rating: 7/10

Review: I've read the very first Outlander book over 5 years ago. It was not a genre I read much of, but it came highly recommended and I gave it a try and enjoyed it immensely. Each book is quite meaty and it can be a journey to finish one, but it's a pleasant journey with familiar faces at your side.

It took me a fairly long time to finish Written in My Own Heart's Blood -- over a month. It was quite strange, really, because I was reading this novel late into the night when I started it, but then at some point I've put it away and had very little compunction to get back to it. The plot felt more like an ebb and flow of a river than the typical arch of a novel. It would pick up pace in places and then just drift off leisurely. I was shocked when the book ended because I really didn't expect it to just end there (and it's not as obvious on Kindle as with the paper books). Towards the end, I also had to do a double take to check that they've really moved on from one location to the other so quickly.

I enjoyed the return of many familiar faces in the book. I enjoyed the descriptions of the Americas during the revolution and the depiction of George Washington, who actually meets the main characters in person in this novel. There are some good dramatic parts. But altogether, the book just didn't feel very cohesive. It felt very much like a "middle" book of a long series, slowly lumbering somewhere. Some plotlines which were carried over from previous books were tied up, new ones got created, but in the grand scheme of things there really wasn't a standalone theme to the book. I still enjoyed it as a historical piece and good character drama, but I am really hoping there will be a bit more direction to the next one.

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