Wednesday, January 26, 2011

"Outlander", the Winter War, and a Traveling Couch

So I've been going back and forth between reading a quite epic tale of love and brutality (Diana Gabaldon's "Outlander" series) and deeply historical (read: yawnfest) books on the Winter War.

Reading, I've been told, is very "writerly".  Bribing myself to get through another million pages of monotonous dribble that is definitely NOT meant to entertain? Probably not "writerly".

Here I will stop making jokes about the various tomes and be honest. After initially forcing myself to churn through the first two or three chapters of "White Death", I actually found that I grew accustomed to the style and began to enjoy it very much. I cheered when the Finns were making headway (in my head, of course, thus causing my characters to look at me as though I was crazy). I found myself rooting for the little guys, and wondering what the outcome was going to be - even though it IS history, and I already knew how it ended. (At this point, it is, I believe, important to mention, that some of my more "sane" characters rudely suggested I seek psychiatric help, in the form of one Dr. Lauren Shipley, who is, you guessed it, another character in my head.)

The "Outlander" series, on the other hand, is proving to be quite a treat. Love, war, torture, time travel; all taking place in the Scottish Highlands... Something I didn't think I could get into has proven to be a series that I am unable to put down. Like the Harry Potter books, I am finding myself whisked into the story and feel like  I am intruding on the characters who have, so nicely, decided to let me tag along for the time being. Many thanks to them - and Ms. Gabaldon - for taking me on a journey to Scotland from the comfort of the bus, the couch and my desk.

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