About a month ago, I was searching for a new historical fiction novel to dig my nose in during a less than eventful trip with my family to Bend. Innocently, I went to one of the online bookstore wedsites (as I often do before purchasing literature) to see if there were any new novels on my favorite eras—such as the Civil War, the American Revolution, and the Tudor reign. It was almost like destiny as I briefly read a synopsis on a series called Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. I had never heard of the series and was slightly intrigued.
So after a long evening at work, I ventured to the nearest bookstore. It is quiet and pleasantly peaceful in a bookstore thirty minutes before closing, surrounded by paper and hardback books filled with adventures and stories of people who have lived and died, while random stragglers pass between the aisles. The comfort of bookstores and the books themselves always bring me back to my childhood days, when I would sneak out of bed after the lights had extinguished and crouch before my nightlight with a creased old book in hand, or a notebook and pencil for the imagination of my own tales. It’s a comforting thing, when your favorite childhood memories—memories that shape you into who you are today—can envelope you in the most ordinary places, like a bookstore.
It was in this very bookstore, when I put down the Philippa Gregory novel I was debating on purchasing and picked up the book Outlander. I don’t know what compelled me—fate, or an inherent need to consume the words inside a book as though it were nourishment—but, as I headed out of the aisle to the cash register, I retraced my steps and picked up Dragonfly in Amber as well.
Since that fateful day at the bookstore, I have given into temptation to return for the next volume in the series. Now, I have realized many others have also fallen in love with Gabaldon’s tale of Jamie and Claire. So enthralled, I have even found myself buying gaelic song after gaelic song on iTunes.
I must admit that this new interest is nearly becoming one of obsession, as I find myself awake into the early morning hours still consumed in the story, spending rare moments online to view fan made videos and blog commentary on the series and the possible future film; so much so, that I have been keeping my own list of actors and actresses I could imagine playing the epic roles of Jamie, Claire, Murtagh, Dougal, and Jack Randall—even the Duke of Sandringham! Mildly pathetic, and in need to expel my literary ranting to anyone who’d listen, I result in the creation of this blog. So there you have it...a blog of an obsessive, fateful young woman whom relents into the temptation of novels.
“To study history is to study the motives, the opinions, and the passions of men in order to know all the successes, the initiatives and the detours, and finally all the illusions that they make known to the mind and the surprises that they make the heart feel. In a word, it is to learn to known oneself in others.”—Jean Mabillon, 15th c. Benedictine scholar.