A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon

Reviewed by: Brittany Morgan

The seeds of war have already been sowed by 1772 and the Fraser’s and Mackenzie’s find themselves right in the middle of the beginning of American history. Honor and duty calls upon Jamie as he is asked to represent the Crown and help unite the residents of the Ridge and Native Americans. Claire continues to push the medical envelope to help patients survive the hardships in 18th century North Carolina. Rodger and Brianna struggle to assimilate in a world that they never imagined they would be apart of. Tensions rise and loyalties are tested in the sixth installment of the New York Times best selling series Outlander in A Breath of Snow and Ashes. 

I have a love-hate relationship with the Outlander series. I have experienced highs and lows in the novels for the characters, in frustration of their choices, plot line missteps and much more. Since the fist installment in the series, this is hands down my favorite book. There was more action in this story, more decisions and more interesting secrets that come to light. Seeing the characters struggle and forced to make hard choices about their lives and the lives of those they love was an aspect that the other books were missing. 

My favorite part of the story was Gabaldon’s infusion of history into the text. This is something she has done in other books to great success as well. It’s always interesting – at least for me – to get history from a human voice, rather than in a textbook. The biggest logistical concern I have for the books in general is the character’s interpretation of time travel. After failed attempts for their “theories” on the subjects I do not understand why they do not see the errors in their logic and adopt a new theory or come to a different conclusion.

Overall this book is one of the better ones in the Outlander series. I gave up on the novels for over a year and jumped back into them to prepare for the new Starz series. I would have liked Gabaldon to add some subtle reminders of some plot details that could have gotten lost from book to book, especially if the themes carried over. 

Outlander is a Starz original television series that will appear on August 9, 2014. 

RATING: 4 Stars

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