Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Diana, What Have you Done to me?!

So I have been fruitlessly trying to read "other" books lately... to no avail. I knew it would happen eventually. I knew - when I was somewhere around The Fiery Cross or A Breath of Snow and Ashes - that I would eventually be "finished" the Outlander books that have been written to date. I knew, and yet, I didn't know. I didn't understand what life would be when didn't have a "new to me" Outlander novel ready at the bedside table.

I was hoping for something like the Outlander series - adventure, romance, with excellent writing (I'll settle for "good") - that keeps you on your toes. Right now I'm trying Dangerous Highlander by Donna Grant. Meh. The story is interesting enough... and there is some Diana-esque Scots speak thrown in for good measure.. like "dinna", "nae" and even "cockstand" ... But it just doesna compare.  Words like "rod" just make me giggle... no matter how hot the subject matter.

So here's my question: While nothing can compare to Diana, have you read any books that came close?

68 comments:

maryse said...

absolutely not. and i miss jamie something fierce (i've also not read echo yet -- saving it for when i canna bear it anymore). i've been reading the JR Ward Black Dagger Brotherhood series which is laughably inadequate in comparison. although there are plenty of cockstands.

Terry said...

I've read J D Robb's "Death" series. Robb is Nora Roberts, a most excellent writer. The series is set in 2050 New York with a homocide lieutenant who has a troubled past. A chief suspect in the first murder is Roarke, a handsome Irish billionaire with a shady reputation.
Highly recommend. Lots of violence, but oooh, Roarke.

Tracey R. said...

LOL I think Tinsbabe and Jenn D are going to have something to say about BDD....

I just finished Time Travelers Wife and would recommend, tho it left me verra melancholy. Very well structured and written. I've become a big Audrey Niffenburger (sp??) fan.

And I just started The Hunger Games, which is supposedly the next Twilight. So far it's good but not blowing me away or anything. (I'm on page 37, maybe?)

operarose said...

I feel your pain, sister. Since I first began Outlander in Nov. 2008, I wasn't able to read anything but the Outlander series. Verra weird for a voracious reader like myself. Well, I just finished a book which was pretty darn good. It's called Time and Again, by Jack Finney. It's a TT book, set in the 1880s. No rods or cockstands, but the hero is a pretty neat guy, there is a little bit of mystery, romance and I loved the NYC settings.

Anonymous said...

I've been reading the Into the Wilderness series by Sara Donati. Claire even has a cameo!:) Nathanial and Elizabeth are not Jamie and Claire but they come close. Good historical fiction about the time period after the Revolutionary War in upstate NY. Also just finished The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett-huge book that tells the story of the building of a cathedral in 12th century England-really good!

Purgatory Carol said...

I started book 1 of BDD (Black Dagger Brotherhood) and didn't get far. NOT that it's not good... I just got a little "meh" about the vibe; they're like biker-vampires. If you're into that; you'll love it. I prefer my vamps in khakis and turtleneck sweaters like Edward Cullen. LOL (The biker fans are totally laughing at me right now.)

So then I switched to Dangerous Highlander, figuring it would be more my speed... but all it's doing it reminding me why Outlander is so damned good - and that I'm so grateful Jamie Fraser doesna have fangs. I will continue reading it though, because she has been leading up to a massive romp between the main characters...almost since the first page. And to sweeten the pot, he hasna had a woman in 200 years.. and she is a virginal orphan who was well on her way to becoming a nun. (laughing as I'm typing) As literary romps go, that one has a pretty outstanding lead-in. I hope it lives up to its own hype.

Brandy said...

You should check out these three books by Paullina Simons. The first one is called The Bronze Horseman, the second is Tatiana & Alexander and the third The Summer Garden. They are probably my 2nd favorite behind Outlander. It's got all the same aspects - adventure, romance, great writing. The first one starts in Leningrad, Russia at the start of WWII. It's an awesome love story and Alexander really rivals Jamie! :)

Brandy said...

Oops...I forgot to mention that I actually heard about the Paullina Simons books from the ladies over on the compuserve board.

Purgatory Carol said...

Anonymous - I read Pillars of the Earth and absolutely loved it. Jenn M just bought it and I told her when she finishes, we'll read World Without End, which I hear is better than Pillars. Have you been watching the show on Starz? OUT-effing-STANDING! I actually thought about starting a temporary mini-blog to tack on to My Outlander Purgatory for the next 4 weeks until the end of the series (season?)

Purgatory Carol said...

Brandy - oooh thanks. I love hearing "second to Outlander"

Anonymous - also, forgot to mention, Both Jenn M and Shannon have recently mentioned Sara Donati's Into the Wilderness series, too. So they will go on my list. I think I figured I'd try something new (or old; back to the vampires!) to sortof cleanse my palate of Outlander before I jumped back into 18th century Scotland or America...but I don't know that it's working! And with Dangerous Highlander, I'm in 17th century Scotland anyway!

Purgatory Carol said...

Maryse - don't know how I missed your comment but I know.."laughable" is a good word. NOT that they're not good (not trying to insult anyone who liked them!) they're just not Outlander.

Terry: You had me at the name "Roarke". LOL

Anonymous said...

Carol-I can't wait to get World Without End! It'll tide me over till Herself's new book comes out! I don't get Starz!:( I need to wait til it comes out on DVD.


Klaudia

Lolly S said...

Gosh! I'm stilling rereading the Outlander series. I am afraid I'll never put them down. But, thanks for all the good ideas. Aaah, Jamie!!!

Anonymous said...

Well, before I started reading Outlander I read "Daughter of The Forest" the seven waters trilogy and ohmygod was it awesome. It's my Juliet Marillier (I hope I spelled that right) and I was absolutley in love with it. Its irish, not scottish so it's a little bit different. Not so many "dinnas" and whatnot but it is one of my all time favorite series. Juliet also wrote another story, just one and its called Wildwood dancing, and THAT one is like sugar in my mouth!! SO AWESOME!!! It takes a second to get into but its the best. Other then that...I also read Sabriel, lireal and Abhorsen, those are all in one series and those are the only stories that are fantasy that I actually liked. Really awesome writer, I think his name is Nix? My whole family has read those, they are really good too. But seriously, nothing compares to Jamie. Oh well :(

-M

Purgatory Carol said...

Operarose - thanks! I like the "and now for something totally different" timeframe. Late 19th century. Excellent.

Klaudia (with a K - love that!) the show is awesome - no worries - rent it when it comes out. OR - do what I tell everyone to do; call and order Starz and cancel in 4 weeks! LOL

Anonymous/M - THANKS - you totally have my juices flowing. I can hear your excitement in your comment. Excellent.

Lolly - just keep readin' sister! ;)

Angela Fielding said...

Has anybody ever read the Series The Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson? http://www.audible.com/mc/Baroque+Cycle

Just curious;-)

Carol- I'm like you you. I just keep reading Outlander sloooowwlly. I'm having a hard time moving on.

Angela Fielding said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
maryse said...

Carol -- i'm on book 3 right now and they get better. each book focuses on one of the warriors and their stories can be compelling. if the names alone don't make your eyes roll into the back of your head permanently.

Marenzi said...

Well, I think there is absolutely NO book to compare with Diana's. But there is another series (and another genre) that I think I love nearly as much as I adore Jamie. It is J.R. Ward's Black Dagger Brotherhood series.
A band of immortal vampire warriors (and sexy as hell!) to defend their race.
This series is awesome and my consolation for Jamie-withdrawal.

stephanie said...

I soooooo understand how you feel. Outlander has really messed up other books for me. Being in a book club has helped because it requires that I read books that aren't about time travelers and red-headed Scots. I'm grateful for that. My favorite books in the past year are not even remotely like Outlander.
"Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society"
"The Help"
"Same Kind of Different As Me"
"Hunger Games".
I would highly recommend all those books. Hunger Games is actually written for teens and the sequel is "Catching Fire". It's great. The 3rd and final hunger book will be released Aug 24.
Hope this helps and happy reading.

Tracey R. said...

The Guernsey book is highly recommended by my Outlander mentor Emily.

Read The Help and really liked it. Very well written with great characters.

Forgot that I'm also starting The Passage for book club--it's gotten GREAT reviews and seems to be the read of the summer. And I still plan to get through the Harry Potters--or at least start them before the end of the year!

Tracey R. said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jane said...

You might want to check out Marsha Canham's The Pride of Lions and Blood of Roses. The first book was published in 1988, so it may predate Outlander. They are both about Alexander Cameron, a Highlander and his love, Catherine, whose is English and it is chock full of info on the fight between the England and the Jacobites and how it affected their lives.

I loved the "Rose" series by Jennifer Donnelly. The Tea Rose is the first book, followed by the Winter Rose. A third book, not yet out, is The Wild Rose. It is the story of the Finnegan siblings and how poverty in the lower working class of Victorian England affected their lives and the lives of their lovers. I especially loved the ending of The Winter Rose.

There is a urban fantasy series I really enjoy by Gail Carriger. The first book is Soulless. It is also set in Victorian England and is a humorous take on the supernatural (vampires, werewolves, etc.) The main character is Alexa Tarabotti and she has no soul. In this world, too much soul gives someone the ability to become a supernatural, being soulless (which is rare) gives that person the ability to remove the supernatural nature just by being touched by the soulless person, and it lasts as long as the touch lasts.

It is a light, funny, fast read with a different take on urban fantasy. There is also a big, lusty, Scottish werewolf in it that is a favorite character, although by the end of the second book, Changeless, I wanted to smack him.

Atalaya said...

No, nay, nope. I tried to read several authors (Johana Lindsey, Christine Feehan, Karen Marie Moning, even Stephenie Meyer!!!), but none are able to give me the incredible mix of history, love, humor and intrigue that Diana Gabaldon gives to her books.

I daresay that Outlander is insuperable :)

Purgatory Carol said...

RIGHT Maryse! Like Wrath and Torhment. Or is it Tohrment? LOL! I know - Jenn M and Jenn D both told me it really is a decent series. Actually I think they liked different books better - but neither liked the latest one that came out in the spring.

THAT kills me too - when you read a series and then don't like the most recent book. I've read 1-9 of the Sookie Stackhouse novels (True Blood series on HBO) and I was all excited for #10 - only to find out it's tres mediocre. Meh.

Cristina H said...

I really love Sharon Kay Penman. "The Sunne in Splendour" about Richard III is great as is her Welsh trilogy.

Diana has recommended Dana Stabenow's Liam Campbell series. They are mysteries set in Alaska. Liam is my #2 fantasy male, behind J.A.M.M.F.

Stephanie said...

I agree with the "Guernsey Literary and POtato Peel Pie Society." My mom and I both loved it, and that doesn't happen very often. So did my mom's best friend, a middle school English teacher. I also am going to jump in with "Into the Wilderness" again. There are _only_ six books, so you can finish the whole story, but they are all good sized and so they will last a while. And, yes, Claire and Ian pop up in the first.

But really, there is no escaping Outlander. I have tried. I've been an Anya Seton fan for a few years now, and someone gave me her book "Devilwater" for Christmas. I finally picked it up to find out the story centers around the two Jacobite risings, culminating at Culloden in the '45. I walked away, couldn't take Culloden again. Then a friend suggested "The Name of the Rose," by Umberto Eco. It's a murder mystery set in a fourteenth century monastery. Seemed promising; then I read in the introduction that the story is supposedly based on the manuscript of...Adso of Melk.

I gave up and started Voyager again :)

Jeaniebirdie said...

I have now read the Outlander series 3 times. I keep going back, and when I'm in between other books (which I force myself to read) I keep going back to my favorite scenes. They're like comfort food to me.

The BDB series is good, imo, (not as good as Outlander, though) It gets better after the first book, Carol, and I can recommend it. I actually like their names. I have NOT read the twillight series, and actually didn't think I would like vampire books. They just didn't appeal to me, but a friend recommended The BDB, and I was hooked.

I am patiently awaiting the GN in September. I cannae wait! Anything new from DG is awesome.

Lolly S said...

Golly - I'll be dead before I can read all these good suggestions! (Too morbid?) Great blog entry today! But first must finish my re-read!

Erin said...

My 1st Outlander read was in 1996, so I've had this problem for 14 friggin years. I walk into a library, an I get depressed bc I know that I'll never find anything quite as good. I have found Goodreads.com to be a great site to get ideas for new reads.

The Rose series mentioned earlier is a nice series, and I'll definitely read the 3rd book when it comes out.

The Bronze Horseman was great (very Jamie-esque male lead ((just Russian, not Scottish!)) I haven't been able to find the 2nd book...can anybody help me figure out how to get a copy?

The Guernsey Literary book was very enjoyable, but it's a quick read, especially compared to herself's works.

And while not especially intellectual, the Irish Trilogy Series by Nora Roberts are very lovely romances with bits of the supernatural. They are: "Jewels of the Sun," "Tears of the Moon" and "Heart of the Sea." I've even gone back and done rereads of these.

My other favorite book is "Coming Home" by Rosamund Pilcher. This is a hefty book centered around the events of WWII with a heartwarming romance. I love historical ficition, but it must have romance, which is why I love the books so stinkin' much!

ShoeCrazy said...

I recently started the Sookie Stackhouse novels after finishing the entire Outlander Saga in about, eerrrr two months :) I love the True Blood series on HBO and am completely obsessed with finding out what is going to happen next, but I canna get into the books AT ALL. They are very flat for me and I find myself adding little things in the lines to spice it up a bit. I think if I would have read the series BEFORE Outlander I would have loved them, but now they are just plain boring. I just started The Lovely Bones which I am really enjoying, and I am chomping at the bit for Mockingjay (the third Hunger Games novel) to be released. August 24th canna come fast enough for me right now...

Anonymous said...

I feel your pain, Carol. Even excerpts, good as they are, are not the same as the books themselves! Try reading the first two books that got me hooked on Scotland umpty ump years ago - both are by Bertrice Small, are set earlier than 18th century (King James I era) and are filled w/ABoSaA type drama in parts.
Read "The Kadin" first, then "Love Wild and Fair"...both are hard to find, but worth it!
NE Mom

Purgatory Carol said...

Shoecrazy I will admit - I read both Twilight and the Sookie books BEFORE Outlander - and I am so happy I did. I LOVED the Twilight books (I started THAT blog before THIS one!) and would never, EVER trash them OR Stephenie Meyer. That said, when I go back and look at Twilight, it's a totally different animal. Almost "See Jane Run". And again - that is NOT a dig on Stephenie Meyer; that woman changed my life in a way. She totally inspired me to do what makes me happy in the midst of soccer practice and Spongebob. And the Twilight characters will always be with me. But Diana Gabaldon... well... reading her is like literary nirvana for me. Seriously.

ALSO - the Sookie books - they are "candy" as Tracey calls them. Seriously - nothing overwhelming, just good, unadulterated fun that is not to be taken seriously in the slightest. I LOVE (did I mention LOVE) the HBO series... but it is nothing like the books. The books are whimsical and silly; the show is hardcore and deviant.

Wow I'm talking a lot. I'll shut up now but THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU TO ALL OF YOU because your suggeStions rock.

KEEP 'EM COMING!

Sirena said...

Oooh I know how everyone here feels. I think those of us lucky enough to have read the Outlander books all the way through are just getting hit with the cold, hard reality of what the OG original Outlander fans have been subjected to all these years!

I've been filling the time with: 1. Angelology, Danielle Trussoni. Loved it! Great book. Definitely worth the long wait at the library.
2. Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett, of course). So happy I had this to read after I finished the last of Outlander! I may not have read it if not for this web site and LOVED the book, love the series, and am loving World without End.
3. Loved Guernsey Literary - great little read.
4. I highly recommend Anne Perry's Inspector Pitt series - good writing, setting, etc.... and fun paperback length. I also love the fun trashy Stephanie Plum series.
5. Can't wait to check out Bronze horseman and other recommendations from this list! Also on my list: Time and Again, The Tea Rose, the Sookie Stackhouse books, and The Book Thief.
I also recommend re-visiting the Brontes: nothing like the windswept moors, moonlit Gothic mysteries, and tortured Byronic heroes :-) Wuthering Heights and jane Eyre, in that order.
Also, I always check out Herself's Methadone List of must-read books on her blog - love the idea of checking out what she's into!
There are some great recommendations in the comments!

ShoeCrazy said...

Carol- You're right. I think I was just expecting them to be more serious and engaging, more like the TV series. Maybe I will re-visit them when I am missing the show and have a better handle on my need for more Jamie and Claire time(which will probably never happen but I can hope).

Christie H said...

I would agree with all those who are recommending the Bronze Horseman series - just BE SURE to have the second one (Tatianna And Alexander) lined up before you finish TBH - MAJOR, HEART-STOPPING CLIFFHANGER!! The writing is almost as good as DG's, but not really... what I mean by that is the author, Paulina Simons, is Russian by birth and it is very obvious in the rhythm of her writing that English is not her 1st language. Rather than being distracting, though, it actually somehow made the writing more enjoyable. Sort of like the 'Scot's speak' in Outlander... Anyway, Alexander is no Jamie, but they do have a remarkable number of things in common - and both series are 'big' reads - long and complex. The other good thing about TBH series is that after 3 books you're done and I found the ending very satisfying. I got the 1st book from my library and then had to order the 2nd and 3rd books on-line - I think I even had to get #3 from the UK? Sorry, I don't remember more details about that.

Tracey R. said...

Sirena--If you like the Brontes, you might want to check out something called "Romancing Miss Bronte"--we just read it for book club. The writing is flawed--the author can't decide whether she's writing fiction or nonfiction--but once it settles down, it becomes more of Charlotte's story and ends up being really interesting. It's just amazing what those three sisters were able to accomplish, given that they were women--and not very well to do women-- in a 19th century society.

Ms K said...

I'll fourth, or fifth, sixth?! the recommendation for Guernsey Literary. Wonderful, sweet book.

On a darker side, the "it" books of the summer, the Millennium Trilogy by Steig Larsson--Girl with a Dragon Tattoo, Girl who Played with Fire, Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest are fantastic. Warning: there are some disturbing scences/violence but they are really great. The second one (Fire) is in my top 10 of the best books I've ever read.

The Art of Racing in the Rain is also a great read. It is by Garth Stein. It is written from the perspective of a dog!

Major Pettigrew's Last Stand is another sweet book (I'm trying to balance out the Millennium suggestions. ha! ;))

I could keep going but my stomach is growling. Happy Reading!

Purgatory Carol said...

This might be the greatest comments page EV-ER. I think I may have to make it a separate page so we can all refer to it when we're looking for something to read!!

For anyone who is interested - I would be ALL OVER having a True Blood (tv) chat (during the season), too. Tracey and I sometimes talk on Facebook after the show.

Brandy said...

Erin - I got the 2nd two books on Ebay and Amazon. Can't remember which one I got where but they were about $10-$12 each. I made the mistake of not having T&A after finishing The Bronze Horseman and about went crazy waiting for it to come in the mail since no local bookstores had it!

Cynthia H. said...

Carol, I would be interested in a True Blood chat...love the show and love the books, too...they're just very different from the show. I actually like Sookie and Eric better in the books...IMO.

I highly second the recommendation for "The Book Thief" and also loved "Water for Elephants" which is now being made into a movie and going to star your boy (and mine), Robert Pattinson!

Anonymous said...

Through A Glass Darkly and sequels by Karleen Koen and my absolute favorite (next to DG's) Christy by Catherine Marshall. Christy is based on the life of the author's mother who went in to the TN Smoky Mountains in 1910 to teach at a mission school. The people who lived in TN at this time were descendants of a group of people who left Scotland after Culloden. Lots of redheads and they even call themselves "highlanders" :-)
Diane in GA

Nelson-n-Pam said...

Carol - I first read Outlander in 1999 and have searched in vain for good literary fiction since. It has taken me 3 re-reads and many years to get over my DG dependency. I am very particular about what I read and simply cannot tolerate mediocre writing anymore. Some favorites:

1. Anne Perry series - Inspector Pitt and his wife make a great team in Victorian England

2. P.D. James - Detective Adam Dalgliesh is a fascinating character written with expertise

3. Alexander McCall Smith wrote a weekly chapter in a Scottish newspaper, then published the serialized story in a book called 44 Scotland Street. Funny, sweet, simple story of modern day Edinburg.

4. The Help - excellent writing without flash or drama - just pure emotion and heart

5. The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake - potentially a really good book about a family with supernatural abilities - the daughter can read someone's emotions by tasting the food they fix. I don't think the author fulfilled the idea as well as she could have, but it was still good

6. Little Bee - this will open your eyes to things that you don't often think about - refugees from African nations that are being plundered by western countries drilling for oil. Made me cry

7. I also recommend the Stieg Larsson triology. It's not often that a series of books takes me totally by surprise - usually I can see what's coming a mile away - but these books were totally new, fresh and stimulated my brain like I've never experienced.

Also, I recommend the website www.shelfari.com as a way to keep up with what you're reading and receiving book recommendations from others.

Good Luck!

Brandy said...

I couldn't even finish Guernsey Literary or Time Traveler's Wife. It's not very often that I don't finish a book (I read about 100-120books a year and that happens maybe a couple of times) and it is just funny how those two books get such great reviews and I couldn't get into them at all. I don't know if it was because of the story, writing or what but I just didn't like them.

Anonymous said...

I've been enjoying Joanna Bourne's books - The Spymaster's Lady, My Lord and Spymaster, and The Forbidden Rose. She writes smart historical romances...

Megs said...

Harry effing Potter.

;)

Anonymous said...

while they are certainly not as engaging as Diana's novels, if you want great scottish romances with those handsome, honorable Jamie-esque men, usually with a healthy dose of highland skirmishes thrown in, then you can't beat Monica McCarty's books. Michele Sinclair and Paula Quinn are also very good.
J

Mandy said...

Hello Carol! So glad to find a blog about outlander!
I was feeling the same way since April after completing Echo, UNTIL I discovered 'The Bronze Horseman' last week. *sigh* I never thought there would ever be a replacement for Jamie in my life but I think it's finally happening. I've read so many books but I think Alexander is the ONLY character that can be compared to Jamie. Please read it if you can Carol, I would love to see what you think about Alexander. Believe me you won't be able to stop yourself from making a BronzeHorsemanPurgatory blog lol.

Sirena said...

LOLLlllll Megs...

2010 Bloggers said...

THE BOOL THIEF is one of the the best books that I have read in a long time! It has become one of my favourites. I am spreading the word!

Currently, I am reading Wally Lamb's THE HOUR I FIRST BELIEVED, which I can't put down. His other books SHE'S COME UNDONE and I KNOW THIS MUCH IS TRUE are also fantastic.

I have read a couple of books by Phillipa Gregory (if you like historical fiction around Tudor times - which I do!)

Also, Margaret George has a great book called THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF HENRY VIII (obviously not his autobiography but really well researched and loved reading it).

I have read and enjoyed the INTO THE WILDERNESS series (all but the latest book).

Edward Rutherford writes very comprehensive historical fictions. I enjoy his books emmensly, however, they are super long reads and very in depth. I have read LONDON, THE REBELS OF IRELAND, SARUM.

And now for something completely different...
I always recommend Christopher Moore to anyone who enjoys reading writing by a sadisticly sarcastic author. You need to have a twisted sense of humour in order to enjoy his books. I love them, especially LAMB. Just look up reviews on line and decide for yourself.

I guess I could go on, however, must catch up on the rest of your postings (which I love to read - thanks again!)

Theresa

Anonymous said...

I am still slowly reading through all these comments but I just wanted to leave a quick note to let you know that the Starz show,Pillars of the Earth is available on Netflix. Seems about a week behind but it's great. I love all the book suggestions as I am also trying to pass the time until book #8. Thanks so much

Christie H said...

OH, yeah - we really, really need a BronzeHorsemanPurgatory blog!!! We 'Shura' do! (hehehehe...inside joke; you'll have to read the books to understand)
Go for it Carol - I also can't wait to see what you think of Alexander!

Mali said...

Erin......14 yrs!!!!!!! Um Wow.

I died inside when I finished Snow and Ashes last yr after reading the books back to back. The wait for Echo was excruciating, but 14 yrs..... you deserve an award or something :-) Luckily I had the Twilight books and movies to latch onto.... and Rob Pattinson :-)



World Without End ROCKS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Carol, Pillars on STARZ is absolutely amazing.....it's true!!!!

Brandy said...

LMAO on the "Shura"!!!!

Brandy said...

And speaking of Alexander/Shura - I was reading over on paullinasimons.com forum how the consensus is that people want Henry Cavill to play him if they ever made a movie...what do you fans of the books think of that?

Sara said...

and now for my "something completely different" suggestions:

I love Susan Elizabeth Phillips - very fun, romantic and modern.

Cirle of Friends by Maeve Binchy - the book is much better than the movie.

And finally, my all time favorite (even over Diana): To Kill a Mockingbird... the movie actually rivals the book, but the book gives you so much more.

Sara said...

and now for my "something completely different" suggestions:

I love Susan Elizabeth Phillips - very fun, romantic and modern.

Cirle of Friends by Maeve Binchy - the book is much better than the movie.

And finally, my all time favorite (even over Diana): To Kill a Mockingbird... the movie actually rivals the book, but the book gives you so much more.

L said...

If you want a different book that is excellent try Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean Auel. The second book of the series, Valley of Horses is my all time favorite book. (not counting the obvious)

There are 5 books in the series with another due in March '11.

Jessica said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jessica said...

I am having this same exact problem!! My mom sent me a ton of Maeve Binchy books, and says they are awesome. But this is coming from the woman who finds Outlander too "lewd and sexually descriptive" and would prefer to read John Grisham. I tried reading them, and everyone on Goodreads says keep on it, you'll get into it... but 200 pages later I'm waiting for a hunky Scot to walk in and ravage the main character. I think since I really enjoy the series, I'll just keep reading it over and over, if I'm not sick of it yet then why stop? Eventually it will become less entertaining... right? OR do I run the risk of having it turn into another Girls Just Want to Have Fun or Sixteen Candles, and it doesn't matter when it's available I have to watch. Who knows.

I had a 2nd date this week, he took me to Barnes & Noble... I hadn't seen the Exile Excerpt until then... OMG!! Just OH MY GAW!! I may have frightened him a little with my abundant alacrity!

I'll read the other comments and hope for a book that might strike my interest. I kind of feel like I know what it is like to be addicted to drugs now. Intervention anyone?

Melissa said...

I agree with those of you who mentioned Sara Donati's WILDERNESS series. I just started INTO THE WILDERNESS yesterday and I have to admit, I have not been able to put the book down. I am completely fascinated with what's going happen with Elizabeth and Nathaniel (even though they are not my Claire and Jamie, but I already feel like they could come close...but we'll see). Great writing, too. Give it a try, Carol!

angi said...

guernsey is really good, so is the steig larson series and paulinna simmons books, though I have not read the third in the series. I just read all of Emily Giffins books--something borrowed, something blue, etc. And while they are contemporary they are really amazing!
If you want some humor, some history, a lot of romance--a little repetitive and predictable, but good-- then try the Julia Quinn Bridgerton series. The best being When He Was Wicked. You'll be verra verra satisfied.

Sirena said...

I really love this whole comment series, by the way, Carol and Tracey! SO many awesome book suggestions. Also, I don't really read romance (aside from Outlander, if it qualifies, and something with this much, um, cockstand should, right?) but I remember really loving the books by Judith McNaught, Perfect, and Paradise :-) Can't wait to put all these suggestions on my list, The book Thief at the top (hm, ironic).

Sirena said...

or hm, coincidentally, if the word Irony is being misused :-)

Paula said...

I liked Time Travelers Wife. It's a little hard to follow at times, but an intense story and very romantic. I'm new so probably others have commented, but I can't get into the Lord John books--not enough Jamie! And sorry, can't get into the gay stuff.

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to chime in again! I first read Outlander in...1992! I was 19 and on vacation and found the paperback in the grocery store after finishing another book so you can all feel my pain when it comes to waiting for another!;) I second the Circle of Friends rec as well as anything by David Sedaris-not historical fiction but hysterically cry your eyes funny! I alos read Forever Amber a few months ago-historical fiction set during the reign of Charles II. It's not Outlander but good. Oh and one of my all time favorites-Katherine by Anya Seton-based on real characters-Katherine Swynford and John of Gaunt. Can I just say-I LOVE this blog!!

-Klaudia

Purgatory Carol said...

Klaudia - I am holding "Green Darkness" by Anya Seton - I bought it a few weeks ago and haven't started it yet (a Highlander Warrior with a bit of a paranormal possession issue got in my way).

Anonymous said...

Carol, I haven't read Green Darkness but did read her book The Turquoise-it was pretty good. But nothing will ever surpass Outlander for me!

-Klaudia