Monday, May 31, 2010

No Chat Tonight - Memorial Day

There will be no chat this evening in observance of Memorial Day.

Our regular Monday night chat will be rescheduled for  Monday, June 7th at 9PM Eastern.

Happy Memorial Day!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Outlander Reread: The Rest of the Story

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have finished An Echo in the Bone. 

OK so here I am again... not liking Frank. I didna like him much the first time around... and I like him even less now. He is ALWAYS ditching Claire! It's their 2nd honeymoon and he leaves Claire to go and chit chat with historians about god knows what. Jack Randall? Um EW. And here's something else. How about how Claire is all "oh I'm going to brush my hair and use my L'Heure Bleu and Frank dahhhhhling is going to come back and want to make love to me and isn't it so divoon?" BLECH. Dude you have JAMIE FRIGGIN FRASER'S GHOST wandering around outside - WATCHING you ("WATCH damn you!") - and you dinna even KNOW IT. That makes me throw up in my mouth a little, I'm so sad for her. Frank? FRANK? Oh Frank pleaseeee come back from your two glasses of sherry with boring Mr. Bainbridge and give me some sugar. Meh. I'd be quickly brushing my hair - and jumping into bed with NO candles lit so I could feign sleep. I'd be snoring my ASS off when Frank got back so he'd just go to bed and shut the hell UP about the water missing from the ewer. "Um, Frank dear... maybe if you'd get off your 1940s ass and DO SOMETHING OTHER THAN TALK ABOUT HISTORY, there'd be some water left since YOU were the one who used it all up in the FIRST place. Perhaps I should have your SLIPPERS WAITING BY THE DOOR when you get home, too???"

OK so I didn't cry when Jamie showed up outside, terribly upset about something. This is surprising since I usually cry about anything DG writes that involves the 20th century and Jamie being worm food. One thing I DID notice (now that this is the third time I've read that part) is this:  Frank knew Jamie was in love with Claire! He could feel it when he saw his ghost. That's why he asked if Claire tended to any Scots in the field hospital. He could tell just from Jamie's GHOST that he loved her. How is THAT for eternal love and longing??? That really grabbed me and wouldna let go, lasses. I just have to know what happens to him at the last. And Claire. And yet - I dinna want those answers to be in Book 8. I want this series to go on and on and never end. I don't want to know Jamie was a ghost, pining away for Claire and wanting her to go back through the stones. And why is Jamie ALONE as a ghost?? Why is Claire not WITH him?? That's what *I* want to know, damnit. It hurts me in my bones. It makes me verra sad. Why is his ghost alone? Riddle me that.

Questions to ponder:

Frank wanted to ask Jamie where he got his beautiful running stag brooch. Did Jamie give that brooch to Claire at one point? Or Bree? I remember it being mentioned.. I just dinna remember in what context. '

- Why are DG's Scots "terrible cowards about injections?" My hub is a (partial) Scot and he isn't a coward about anything. I swear he would have survived the Titanic. Even if he were one of those poor souls depicted in the film who were bouncing off the deck into the water at the end.

- Is Frank's telling Claire it would make no difference if she had been unfaithful...somehow related to the fact that she was unfaithful to Jamie?

- WAS Claire even unfaithful to Jamie?  Survey says "NO". Stupid in his absence... yes. But unfaithful? Not in my mind.

" 'The quality of mercy is not strained,' " I quoted. " 'It droppeth as the gentle dew from heaven...' ". 

Well isn't THAT Outlander quote interesting, now that we know what Claire did with Lord John. Hmmm.....

PS - Well now we know why Frank eventually believed Claire about Jamie and took him seriously. He saw his GHOST. Once she showed up pregnant and told him the story about Jamie...and he did some snooping with his boring historian friends (not that all historians are boring; just Frank) he must have pieced together the story with the ghost and realized she was telling the truth. Might I say I am DYING for more Frank backstory from the 40s/50s/60s when Claire and Frank were raising Bree. WHAT  did Frank do to research Jamie?? You KNOW he did. HOW did Frank know Bree would be dangerous and in danger all the time??? I hope Book 8 is chuck full of this Jamie-research goodness. Maybe I'll like Frank a little better once I know "the rest of the story".

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tartanic's Scottish Car Wash

Holy cow. I dinna even know what to say about this. It's very funny. And a little gross. And a little yummy. All at the same time. Kindof like when Jamie Fraser smells like woodsmoke. And pungent man-fug. And wild flowers. All at the same time. 

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Next Up: Another My Outlander Purgatory VIDEO!

Just a quick post to let you know Tracey is coming on Friday for a new video session for My Outlander Purgatory! And I am hoping for a guest appearance by Jenn M and Shannon, too! We need their reactions to the end of "An Echo in the Bone", right?!

Sooooo....

Any topics you want us to discuss? 
Any questions you have for us?
Any shout-outs you want us to give? 

LET'S HEAR 'EM!!!!!

Leave us a comment below - or send us an email here.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Things Ye Miss During The First Go Round

OK so I'm reading Outlander again. And I'm looking for things. Holy COW, am I looking. And I'm finding. To the point where I'm making things up in my head. Or am I?

Frank says:
"If I end as a childless stub on my family tree, it will undoubtedly be on fault of our untiring hostess out there."

Carol thinks: 
"Holy CRAP - Mrs. Baird has something to do with why Claire went through the stones!  Wait. Baird - LAIRD. It all means something!"

Frank says:
"Bodies under the foundation, though-that's where a lot of the local ghosts come from."

Carol thinks:
"JAMIE'S UNDER THE FOUNDATION! But where?! And does that mean he'll definitely die in Scotland like Diana hints at in The Outlandish Companion?!" 

I'm telling you - I am having more fun with this reread than I ever imagined possible! I'm probably overreacting - but it's a lot of fun to ponder all of this, ken?

Here's a burning question that means nothing but I pondered for a good 30 seconds:

What ever happened to the vases?!?

And I'll leave you with THIS:

Frank says:
"You've never heard that old song about what a Scotsman wears beneath his kilts?" 

Well lassies... you're in for a treat. Warning: careful at work or around the bairns.  There may be a wee bit more than you bargained for showing in a photo or two.

Outlander Chat TONIGHT!

Dinna forget Outlander Chat this evening at 9PM Eastern!! I have read a little more in Outlander and I have a TON of topics!  Hope to see you there!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

I'll Have What She's Having!

Dinna fash  yourselves, sassenachs... the camera turns about 15 seconds in. And check out the hair on the guy playing the pipes! Right out of an Outlander novel, I tell ye!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Outlander Newbies

So yesterday I'm at school pick up... and I see Jenn M talking to my friend Lorraine. And Jenn looks like the cat that swallowed the canary. And Lorraine sees me and says: "Carol, I've tried reading this Outlander book... because I know you all said it's so good... but I just don't know" to which, I reply: "Well where are you?" and she says "I'm about 50 pages in or so... she's on a horse with this guy". At this point Jenn can no longer contain her amusement at the humor in this situation and says "yeah... she's with SOME GUY... you know... the guy she HELPED!" OK so now I'm dying... and I'm being a wiseguy and going "I think I remember that guy..." and Jenn and I are giggling together...and saying "YEAH - SOME GUY!!!!" in unison. And Lorraine's like "OK then... I should keep reading..." And we're like "Um, yeah. You should keep reading." And then she walked away and we just laughed our arses off. And Shannon's behind Jenn, talking to someone else... but listening to us and laughing her arse off. I tell you - it was two scoops of yummy newbie goodness. There's nothing better than the innocent stage of early Outlander reading. We've all been there.

OK off to a grad party... and I am thrilled to report that it's a good hour+ away from my house... and I'm really excited to get a good chunk of Outlander in... especially since I left off at like page 2 or something. I remember kindof skimming through the skirmish between Jamie putting Claire on his horse the first time... and them getting to Leoch. I'm also so excited because I now know where Jamie was coming from and what he had been through leading up to that trip. It's all so much fun the 2nd time around!! No worries! No pressure! Just pure, unadulterated FUN with the SCOTS!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Carol's Casting Couch

SPOILER ALERT: This section if full of spoilers. Enter at your own risk!


Ian Murray Jr. 
My Ian Murray Jr. would be played by Joe Mazzello. I knew the moment I saw him in HBO's "The Pacific".  He's perfect.  Ian is tall and homely with the most beautiful, soulful brown eyes.  Joe Mazzello has or can be all of the above. (I'm sorry about the "homely" thing, Joe! I think you're adorable!) He's even got a wide mouth like Jamie. And he can saunter. And even though he's thin, he's muscular and solid. And most importantly,  he can ACT. Joe Mazzello impressed me more than any actor has in a long time. I'm showing you two videos because you really have to see him move and speak to understand why he'd be so perfect as Ian.

Jenn M made a really great comparison: Joe Mazzello's character comes home from war a completely different person... just like Ian Murray comes home from the Mohawk a very changed man, indeed. Both of these characters begin as boys, but become men in front of our eyes... due to their brutal surroundings. I'm telling you - if you didn't see The Pacific, try to rent it when it comes out on video.





Geillis Duncan
My older Geillis Duncan would be played by Cathy Moriarty. She was my Geillis when I read Outlander... but I always figured she was too old to play the part. Imagine my THRILL when she showed up 20 years later in Voyager!

JUST DO IT!

I have this problem. I make things harder than they have to be. When my house is a mess, I see the whole house simultaneously in my brain and get so overwhelmed I don't know what to do... instead of taking one room at a time.

When I saw the Book and Writers' Community over at Compuserve, I was panicked by the vast number of posts... and stared at my computer screen like Cindy Brady stared at the red light during the quiz show ("Baton Rouge, Cindy! Baton Rouge!").. instead of just picking a topic and replying.

When I've thought about posting my casting choices for Outlander movie/series, there were some I didn't have pegged... and I have put off posting a casting entry forever... because I was waiting until I knew who I wanted for everyone.

Well NO MORE! Today I jumped in over at Compuserve (Karen are you proud of me?!).... and I am going to post some casting choices momentarily. So sit right back and you'll hear a tale...

And oh yeah... my house. Weeeeel... (rubs chin).. 2 outta 3 ain't bad!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Big Outlander Reread

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've read the first two pages of OUTLANDER. 

So I started again. I didna get far but WOW - the things you miss the first time around! Seriously... the things I took for granted during my first go-round are totally interesting now!

Who knew the entire series opens with Claire's light brown curly hair? Not I, said the fairy queen. And Mrs. Baird! I barely remember her. She's like the modern day Mrs. Bug! I'm getting Wizard of Oz vibes here! Is Claire going to wake up in the B&B when this is all over and say "And you were there... and you... and you!" pointing at Mrs. Baird aka Mrs. Bug and Frank aka Jack Randall???

So there Claire is, discussing Olgilvie home perms and trying to get away from Mrs. Baird... and I'm thinking "Run, Claire.. Run! Run to the stones! You won't be sorry!"

And then I read a bit about Claire and Frank having a little afternoon delight whilst Mrs. Baird vacuumed outside their door.. and I kiiiiiinda threw up in my mouth a little. Frank Randall, indeed. I may have to skip these little amorous parts between the two of them... because I feel dirty.... like she's cheating on Jamie. I mean.. if she was with Jamie 200 years ago... then that already happened, right? And m'girl's CHEATING with Frank. Jamie was her husband first!

Damn if I know. Which came first, the chicken or the egg?

Jamie Fraser or Frank Randall?

Survey says: JAMIE!!!

POST SCRIPTUM: WOW WAIT til you hear THIS! I was going to give credit for the standing stones photo above.. and when I went to the homepage of the website... I found out it was taken by someone named...

wait for it....

JOCASTA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And she makes BEAUTIFUL, handcrafted cards... so check out Art in Nature... and Jocasta!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Find a Happy Place

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've read An Echo in the Bone. 



Maybe it's the rain. Maybe it's the wind. Maybe it's the FREEZING COLD day in New Jersey. Or maybe... just maybe... it's JFW.

Jamie Fraser Withdrawal.

I knew this day would come. I just didna know so soon. Lassies - I just made oatmeal biscuits with beef stew for dinner. Now why do you think I did that? I even served them with honey. My god. I'm starting to understand Claire's doage of Lord John. Hell I'm making BISCUITS AND STEW to feel closer to Jamie. At this point, fornicating with his BFF doesna sound so "out there", ya know?

School pick-up today was the hardest it's been since I finished the series. Absolutely brutal. Probably because it was pouring buckets of rain and I was stuck in my car with nothing but my Kindle. Detect a bad attitude toward my Kindle today? Well you're right. I'm angry at that non-"new Charlaine Harris novel"-offering daughter of a pocked whore. Mmmmphhhh!!!! So I read through parts of Lord John and the Brotherhood of the Blade... but quickly headed over to Outlander. Yup. The wedding night. I'll admit it. I went straight to it... like an addict to the crack, I tell ya.  That is what I've become. An addict in withdrawl, rifling through bathroom cabinets and pulling up cushions on my couch... just looking for a hit. Somewhere. Anywhere. No matter how small and insignificant. I'll take it, yes I will. I'll take it because I've had 8 STRAIGHT MONTHS OF LOVELY, MOIST, FRESH JAMIE FRASER.... and now I have nothing. It makes my Edward Cullen withdrawal look like giving up gum for Lent.  How I'm going to survive this (without gaining 50 pounds since I had THREE, count 'em, THREE biscuits with butter and honey) I'll never know.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Outlander Chat Tonight!

Dinna forget Outlander chat tonight at 9PM Eastern! Hope to see you then, sassenachs!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

The Compuserve Books and Writers Community

The Compuserve Book and Writers Community is a GREAT place to go for all things Diana Gabaldon. It answers SO MANY questions... is chock full of posters who are just as Outlander-rabid as myself... and has post after post from Herself... some with wee gifties such as excerpts of future books. And it is moderated by a good friend to My Outlander Purgatory, Miss Karen, herself.

COMMA HOWEVER. I want to take Karen's advice and introduce myself. But I am just one of those people who has a horrendous dime diving into anything (unless, of course, it's a chocolate cake).  I am a little intimidated with so many seasoned posters... and don't want to make a bad impression right out of the gate.

So - Karen - please answer something for me - as well as those reading this post who have the same question:

What is the best way to jump in and say "Hi" on Compuserve? Should we start a new thread to introduce ourselves?  Or is there a Newbie thread we should jump into first?

THANK YOU KAREN! (said like "Thank You Easter Bunny!  Bok Bok!")

Saturday, May 15, 2010

My Scottish Games FAIL!

The fact that I didn't see THIS until this afternoon hurts me to my core. THE 78 FRASER HIGHLANDERS IN CONCERT, NO LESS! I TOTALLY would have ROAD TRIPPED TO THIS!!!

Laphroaig Whisky

Am I posting a video about making whisky? Yes, yes I am.  This is what Jamie and Claire and Fergus and Marsali and the whole gang were always up to on the Ridge. Pretty cool, no?

Friday, May 14, 2010

Thee's Plans for the Future

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've finished AN ECHO IN THE BONE.

OK - I read the last chapter again. I DEFINITELY missed that the Fergster has been hanging with Randall-Isaacs. Just WAIT until Uncle Jamie puts two and two together about THAT guy.

I am in the same place I was when I last read it. Wondering what Ian and Rachel will do in the future. BUT - I loved watching Ian fear he had lost... only to hear her say she loved him and that they'd work it out (in thee's lovely wolf language.) I was so completely flipping out the last time that I definitely read that chapter too fast.

What do YOU think will happen to Ian and Rachel?

A Lovely Birdhouse on the Bank of a River?

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've finished the whole bloody series.

So last night around 3AM I had a visit from my 8 year old who I now know (one doctor's visit later) has strep throat. And while I was lying there trying to get back to sleep, all I could think of was Ian and Rachel.

Are they going to get married? I get the whole "Thee is my wolf" conversation (and loved it) but I don't see how that solves anything. As I once heard Drew Barrymore utter in Ever After: "A bird may love a fish, Signore, but where would they live?" If they get married - she'll be kicked out of the Meeting. Will she do it anyway? And if they don't get married, but live together, she'll be living in sin, and I dinna think Rachel would ever do anything of the sort.

Clearly I raced through this part and am missing something. I'm going back to read it right now. And since I'm home with "nuthin' to do, nowhere to go" - I'll be back shortly.

Who Wants to Live Forever?

I think we all need to watch this video from the movie "The Highlander". I've posted it before... and I thought it deserved a re-post. It's so beautiful. You will totally get the Jamie/Claire feeling from it. Sigh...

Thursday, May 13, 2010

My Outlander Purgatory is Headed to ComicCon 2010 in NYC!

Hey CAROL:  
 
  You have chosen wisely! You obviously have a keen intellect and superior knowledge of all that is cool. Thanks for joining us at New York Comic Con 2010, October 8-10, 2010, Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York, NY.  
 
  You have cleverly registered for the following options:
 
DESCRIPTION QTY
Weekend Pass1
 

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

You Can't Make This Stuff Up

You have to check out this eBay listing for a trading card for one Jamie Fraser; Hockey Player. Here's a hint: He's got red hair! I cracked up when I saw it!!

OH GOD! OH GOD! OH GOD!

JaymieJ - you are my FAVORITE PERSON ON THE PLANET TODAY for introducing me to these commercials!!!!

HELL (to the) YES!

THANK YOU SO MUCH to JaymieJ who posted a comment under my "You Know You Miss Jamie When..." post yesterday. She posted this spectacular feast for the eyes... and I just HAD to share it with all of you. Enjoy! I know I did!!!!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

You Know You Miss Jamie When...

You KNOW you're going through Jamie Fraser withdrawal when catching sight of THIS GUY in your basement makes you stop in your tracks. Is there no hope for me, lassies?!

Got any silly Jamie moments of your very own? Lets hear 'em!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Another Great Outlander Chat!

Thanks to everyone who came to our Outlander Chat tonight. What a great time! We had 21 people chatting at one point (and a few more lurkers to boot! And everyone is welcome! Chatters AND lurkers!)

I apologize if any of you had a hard time getting in and I assure you; I DID TOO!  The chat website I use made me upgrade to their paid plan because we had more than 10 people in chat this week. And I'm not complaining... because I LOVE TALKING OUTLANDER!!! :)

Outlander Chat Tonight: ENTIRE SERIES!

Come join us at Outlander chat tonight to discuss anything and everything in the series!  9PM Eastern!

I AM FINISHED!!!!

TOP TEN things that go through one's mind the day after finishing An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon:

10) Oooh I have ten minutes - I'm going to read!!! Oh. Wait. Shit.

9) How fast can I read the whole series a second time?

8) 2 years 'til new Jamie?!?!?! Give me the phone.  "911, What's your emergency?"

7) Does anyone know where I can get a wolf?

6) "How many bullets are left in this gun?"

5) EFF the Kindle. I'm buying the books! I need to do MAJOR PAGE FLIPPAGE right now!

4) "Edward? Jamie?" (yelled like "Cindy? Bobby?")

3) Did somebody say "cliffhanger"?

2) No dirk-carrying, cup-draining, peach-splitting or herb-collecting for HOW long??

1) Claire, you ignorant slut!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

LOVE THE ONE YOU'RE WITH INDEED!!!!!!!!!!

SPOILER ALERT (HOLY GOD THIS WOULD BE A BIG FRIGGIN SPOILER ALERT) Dinna read unless you  have read chapter 95 in AN ECHO IN THE  BONE. 

OH!
MY!
GODDDDDDDDDDD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Claire and Lord John Grey, SITTING IN A (holy mother of god on high) TREE!!!!!!!!!!!!

PS: Dear Jamie,

You now have my blessing with the Indian squaws.

Love,
Carol

Love the One You're With

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 93 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

I am never going to finish this  book if I don't stop STOPPING. But I canna help it; I have to blog. I have to write. I have to get all of this toxic shite OUT of my brain. And I also have to seek solace in YOU good sassenachs.. because you have all read this and have been through this gut wrenching ride I am now taking. It. Is. Killing. Me. And yet... I'm enjoying the heck out of it. Is that odd? Do I need therapy? I'm thinking the answer is "yes" on both counts.

OK all I really want to say right now is this: If I were Claire... and I was told Jamie was dead... and William walked into the room... I would ab-so-lute-ly LOSE IT - and I would DROP at his feet! If they are such doppelgangers, I would have my arms round his ankles and I'd be yelling "I LOVE YOU JAMIE!!! I LOVE YOU JAMIE!!!" as he tried to shoo me away with his - ah - shoe.  It would be one ugly scene. And Tracey would undoubtedly be rolling her eyes at my mother and saying "Someone really needs to get her some Valium".

OK have to go finish 93 and hopefully the book. I'm at 94% on the Kindle. It's 7:09 and The Pacific (aka awesome show on HBO starring Joe Mazzello who is MY YOUNG IAN MURRAY) is on at 9:00.

Pray for me por favor...I'll be back with an update soon!

PS - Has anyone realized how eerily calm I sound for someone who is soon to finish Echo?  I am starting to worry about myself. Truly.

Doctor Doctor, Gimme the News, I've Got a Bad Case of Loving You

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 89 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Whoa, y'all. I'm still processing. And I'm not even finished yet. Diana has done a fantastic job of tying up some of these storylines... or putting them back together again, I should say.

Claire showed up in Philly and SAVED THE MOTHER EFFING DAY, oh yes she did. DAYS, actually. Not only did she take out Henri-Christian's tonsils and adenoids... but she also felt around and took bullet #2 out of Henry. (Oooh I just realized both patients names were "Henry". Interesting little coincidence. Told you I focus on inane things.) I LOVED her surgical field in Henry's room... and how she made Denny wear a mask... and had the ether... and told Lord John he might want to back up a little because it was going to get a little messy. She did a FANTASTIC job of creating the most sterile environment possible. (Have I not mentioned I'm a bit of a germaphobe and am also the resident nurse in not only my house, but my neighborhood. A few weeks ago my neighbor's daughter called and said "Carol, my mom cut her finger and I can't look. Can you come over?) I absolutely LOVE reading about Claire's surgeries. Diana does such a thorough job at explaining exactly what is taking place - along with Claire's own fears and anxieties about all the things that could go wrong - that you feel like you're there, helping her along... like Rachel Hunter.

And speaking of... let me now turn this morning's entry to Rachel Hunter.  There she was - with her future sister in law (I hope) Dottie (whom I love more than all rationality allows.. and almost as much as her father, Hal) and William (he seems so stoic all the time) and there is that bug...ARCH BUG!.. sniffing around down the street. I swear to god, if that fool COMES NEAR RACHEL - ESPECIALLY before her big reunion with Ian (for which I am waiting with bated breath) I will... UGH! I dinna know WHAT I will do. I want to see that girl walk down the aisle in a white SILK dress  (since thee says silk is A-OK!) and with Ian on her arm with his cute little dots all up the sides of his cheeks. If Arch Bug kills her I.... I.... I.....  Sigh. I hate to say it, but I'm hoping he'll come to his senses and at least kill Rollo if he's going to kill a living, breathing soul. (I'M SORRY - I LOVE ROLLO - but c'mon now He's getting to be verra old and will die soon anyway and is a CANINE.)

I canna talk about that anymore, lassies. Next I will mention my love for James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser... and his letters to Claire whilst in France. His little story about the Iroquois chopping off his finger was priceless (along with his admittance that he might have checked out a boobie or two) and I was shocked he was able to write so much without the finger. Claire was right; she left him with a working hand. Outstanding. I just hope nothing goes wrong with his passage to the colonies... and I wonder if Jenny will be with him. Her thinly veiled apology-by-proxy was not enough. I hope she and Claire can make it right when she comes to America. (I willna get started on how bad I also feel for Jenny again... I think I've already belabored that point.)

Lordddddd it's going to be a long day. I am going to read now. Wish me luck. I feel like I'm headed up the Mount of Olives...

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Philadelphia Freedom

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read the first 4 pages of Chapter 87 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE.

Dearest Claire,

I beg you to pipe down about Philadelphia, my friend. As my mother Patsy says: "Better than you has lived in Philadelphia." Let me tell you a little something about this city (which is really just a big town full of neighborhoods) that you call "grubby and unwelcoming".  I had the pleasure of visiting most major cities in the great United States of America when I was working before I had my children... and Philadelphia is at the top of the "welcoming" list. The people are friendly; but not fake. They'll help you out if you need directions to the best cheesesteak place (Mama's in Bala Cynwyd, just outside the city, shhhh that's a really well-kept secret) and give you a smile while doing it. They will be nice as pie to you (unless you're wearing a New York sports jersey) no matter where you are: the Northeast... South Philly... the Western burbs... Rittenhouse square.. Kensington... Society Hill... doesna matter; Philadelphians are good people and do not all live in row homes with "yards full of rubbish". 
Next time you're there in the 20th century, please do stop into the Dickens Inn (which is now actually called "The Dark Horse Pub") whose building was erected in 1788. You will get a tremendous feel for the true magic and wonder of Philly - and a lovely plate of bangers and mash to warm your wame. Also make sure to visit Boathouse Row... or visit the truly beautiful works at the Philadelphia Museum of Art... or the dinosaur bones at the Academy of Natural Sciences... or the truly amazing inventions at the Franklin Institute.

I thank ye... your humble servant,
Purgatory Carol

PS: Please dinna rank on New Jersey either, as my spiel is even worse for that lovely state... which has been made into a laughing stock by the likes of The Situation and Carmella Soprano.

An Open Letter to Herself

SPOILER ALERT: DINNA read unless you have read Chapter 86 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Dear Diana Gabaldon,

Might I say that you - I mean thee -  have completely outdone yourself on chapter 86 of "An Echo in the Bone" with Dottie showing up at Denzell's room. Every time you - I mean thee - write a scene like this, and share it with the world,  I feel a warm glow that travels up from my toes and spreads through my stomach in a great flurry like that of a good whisk(no e)y buzz.

I. Am. HOWLING at the hilariousness of this scene. It's classic cinema; a scene that burns to be brought forth on the big screen. Watching Rachel watch Dottie try to make her Lady-self into a Quaker makes me laugh so hard I just might tinkle in my trousers. (Please excuse the vulgarity of the prior statement, but goshdarnit; it's true.)

I hope you - thee - will accept my warm thanks for making my life a ridiculously fun place to be at this verra second.

Warmest regards,
Purgatory Carol

PS: I hope you didn't kill Young Ian because that will just throw me right over the edge.

Post Scriptum Scriptum: LOVED the Valley Forge scene. I'll give you a tour sometime if you ever make it to southeastern Pennsylvania and are looking for something to do. Just in case you're wondering if I truly love Valley Forge as much as I have lamented about in the past, please do have a gander at one of my (rather ridiculous) wedding photos below, taken in Valley Forge Park in 1993. (And please dinna laugh too hard at my hair. Again - it was 1993. My headpiece was a BOW for god's sake. Ahhh 90s fashion.) And notice, if you will, who is standing to my left in this shot. None other than Twitter Tracey, herself! And here we are - 17 years later - still putting our mugs in front of the camera!

What the Buck?!

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 85 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

I canna BELIEVE I haven't mentioned Willy B. MacKenzie - aka Buck yet. I am so on the fence about this guy. I LOATHED him when he screwed Roger over, almost getting him killed. But now... sheesh.. I dunno.. he's helping Roger. And he's being honest. He told him he went through his study and read everything he could get his hands on. So far, he has been good with the kids.. and polite enough to Brianna... so I'm thinking "Geez - is this one of those times you have to be nice to someone who was a douche at one point, because he's family?" I dinna know.

What I DO KNOW is that JEM IS GONE!!!  Mandy woke up screaming... and Bree called to see if Jem was where he was supposed to be.. and all I could think was "Wow Bree is going to look like a complete ass calling someone's house at 3AM if Jem's sound asleep in bed." (Am I the only one who sometimes focuses on completely inane things??) But now Roger and Buck (who I want to stay in the 1980s, y'all, I don't know why) are crawling up to the stones to see if Jem's there and the stones are screaming  and and....

And I had to take my OWN IAN TO SOCCER, darnit!!!!

More later!!

Friday, May 7, 2010

And Good Old Boys Drinkin' Whisky and Rye

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 84 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Ian. (sigh) Poor Ian. My god - who knew? Who knew I'd cry like a baby when he died? It was bad enough we were already faced with the fact that Young Ian and Claire were gone. But the death of Ian Murray? What a poor sweet soul. I am crushed. He was the only brother Jamie ever knew after Willie died. (sigh) Just absolutely crushed.

I am not really handling Young Ian's departure that well at all. Dude your dad is D-Y-I-N-G. And you need to "fly - be free"??? WTF?! I dinna care HOW restless you are in your skin; your father has barely any time left on this earth. Stay and be with him! God it's mind-boggling to me how he can be so selfish. And for what? Some girl you met a few weeks before you left for Scotland?! You are going to regret this until the day you die, my friend. Until the day you die (which please, lord, dinna let happen in this book. I dinna know why but I have such a bad feeling about Young Ian these days.)

My goal is to finish this weekend. I couldna NOT keep going. I'll keep you all posted. (Laura - email me and send me your info so I can send you updates!) 

A Musical Gift For My Sassenach Friends

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 82 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Ho. Ly. Crapola. I just heard THIS SONG on the radio and went "IAN IAN IAN!!!" Take a listen and think of Ian and Rachel. Now remember, y'all, I'm only starting chapter 83 (I have decided to finish the book - insane asylum or not) so I dinna know WHAT happens with Ian and Rachel going forward.

All I know is he's in Scotland missing her... and she is in American keeping Rollo safe for him.

And I am in New Jersey freaking out for both of them.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Hell Hath No Fury Like a Woman Scorned

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 82 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Lads and lassies - I canna believe what a wild ride this book has been. Mr. Toad's got nuthin' on Jamie and Claire. And I'm not even finished yet. But honest to Bride; I'm terrified to finish. I can tell you right here - right now - in all seriousness... I dinna know if I want to finish this book before the next one comes out. I like where I am now. No. Scratch that.  I can HANDLE where I am now. Claire has made the decision to go to Philadelphia and operate on Henry Christian. It's scary - but it hasna happened yet. As of right now - Jamie and Claire are going to have a wee dram. Or two. And something tells me we'll get some tremendous going away sex out of the deal. So yes. I can handle it fine. But what's to come???? I dinna think I can handle what's to come. Not if I have to wait for two more years before I find out what happens. So I said to myself, "Myself", I said, "Why not stay on a good note? Why not bide my time in contentment, rather than anguish and despair?"  Yes. I am seriously thinking of putting out my best Blackjack hand and saying "I'LL STAY".

One bad thing about this book? It's making me eat. It's making me NOSH.  I canna take the  drama - and yet I thrive on the drama - all at the same time. So bring on the Cheetos (or microscopic 100 Calorie popcorn bags) because I needs myself something to CHEW.

Characters - I have such mixed feelings about so many characters right now. Here are my thoughts on two:

Jenny - Love Jenny. Hate Jenny. Love her for being her... hate her for refusing to accept Claire. I understand what she's going through with Ian and I give her a lot of slack for that. But to say Claire has nae soul? That is some cold-hearted stuff right there. Dems fightin' words. For god's sake, the woman poured our her heart and soul to you about being in Boston all those years. You KNOW that CLAIRE SUFFERED now. How about giving her a BREAK ye wee beastified woman?!

Laoghaire (now renamed "Cougar Ho" instead of "Wee Ho") - as a chick and a lover-o-Jamie, I loathe her with every fiber of my being. But honestly - now that the dust has settled - and Jamie and Claire have had 12 happy years together - for the first time since LEOCH - I can understand why she's been so horrible to Claire. I understood before... but I never really stopped loathing her long enough to really feel what she had been feeling all those years ago. She loved Jamie - and he somewhat led her on. Oh yes he did with his not-so-virginal kisses behind the curtain in the alcove....and his decision to sit next to her at dinner and such. Oh yes he did lead her on.  And when he married Claire she was heartbroken. And she thought it was a forced marriage - and years later, when she married him, she thought he'd come around. But he didn't. Ultimately, if Claire didna come into the picture, Laoghaire might have had a really good chance with Jamie Fraser. You really can't begrudge her the uh, grudge. And even now - she is entitled to a little happiness. Jamie is, right? So why shouldn't she be?  He married her with the promise that he would take care of her and her bairns - for good or for bad. And he bolted. Right - because she was an uncaring, unfeeling, frigid disaster... But I dinna blame her for hating him - and I can finally see her side of things. She didna show him love because he didna show her love. Plain and true. COMMA-MOTHER-EFFING-HOWEVER.... She is the devil's spawn and I dinna care if she falls into the loch with yon annoying servant-boytoy. How DARE she just show up at Lallybroch all humble and beg Claire to look at her, let alone TRAVEL TO PHILADELPHIA (Philly represent!!) WITHOUT JAMIE to take care of Henry Christian???? After she tried to KILL Jamie??? And bled them of all their money over the years??? And carried that grudge? (Which, remember now, I don't begrudge her) Forget it. SHE is the witch and Jenny is a DUMBASS MORON if she canna see that.

Here's what kills me. Laoghaire is once again sending Claire to the wolves. We've seen it before. Does she truly have good intentions this time around? Only time will tell. 

"What is, is. What was, will be. What will be WAS but will be again."

 SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've read chapter 80 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE.

Jesus, Mary mother of god. CLAIRE JUST TOLD THE MURRAY'S ABOUT HER PAST! I am FLIPPING THE HELL OUT right now!

She and Jenny are in the henhouse! They're having "the talk"!!! Jenny's like "You were in France blowing us all off while we starved" and Clair'e all like "Hello? I was in Bahhhstan in the 1900s, Miss, now step OFF." Holy COW! I TOTALLY never saw THIS coming!

Sorry - I know I've skipped a ton and I PROMISE to go back to it (LORDDDDDD will I go back to it!) but I just HAD to tell you all that I know what Claire did. Holy CRAP!! I'm in complete and utter SHOCK!!!!  "By the way, y'all, I'm from the 20th century. Now can somebody please pass the bannocks?"

PS - Tracey and Jenn - if you think I dinna see what's happening with young Ian, ye've another thing coming. And I'm none too happy about it. Unless Ocean County Medical Center wants a screaming lunatic on their hands this evening, this cough had better clear the eff up.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My Email to Tracey

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 70 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Just sent the following email to Tracey. I am DYING. You're not kidding, Karen.... I need a SEAT BELT.

Left off on Chapter 70. I'll be putting the kids to bed and reading in silence all night. Trying to catch up with Jenn who stopped at 82 and seems to be in physical pain and I'm afraid to know why.

Here's where I am:

Ian kissed Rachel and I have been thinking about him (and Joe Mazzello) all day.

That dude showed up and totally killed Jamie and Claire's buffalo skin buzz by saying he knew Jamie killed Dougal.

Ian killed the aforementioned dude.

Ian ran off and Rachel said she'd take care of Rollo (thank GOD).

Jamie was asked to accompany Simon Fraser's body to Scotland.

Jamie did the Happy Dance, despite everything going on with Ian. (OK that one only happened in my mind.)

William Bucleigh MacKenzie showed his jerk ass up at Lallybroch.

And last but not least, I had to close the book just as I was reading about THE PAOLI MASSACRE!!!  HOW MANY TIMES have we driven by that sign on Lancaster Ave????? And we never CARED IN THE SLIGHTEST!!!! And now I'm wanting to take a friggin FIELD TRIP to my own friggin HOME TOWN.

More later....

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Visitor

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 67 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE.

Dear Ian,

When some dude comes sniffing around camp and spits in your Auntie's pottage, you DO SOMETHING. You don't just stand there laughing while he walks away. 

I bet you wouldna have stood by calmly whilst he spat in your uncle's brandy.

Just my .02. 

Love, 
Carol

Another Thought

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you've started chapter 66 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

Oh. My. God. Waiting for William to see Jamie is giving me the feeling I had when I was waiting for Jamie to run into Jack Randal again. You knew he was alive. You knew it was going to happen. You just didna know when. And here they are - Jamie and William - on opposite sides of Simon Fraser's bed (who did NOT die in battle in real life, so I'm tres interested to see what happens here) and Jamie isna looking up - so William isna noticing him.  My god - this is the best drama I've ever been privy to in my entire life! This makes "Who Shot JR?" look like Mister Rogers!!!!!!!

I Had to Stop and Blog!

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read Chapter 65 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

WHY ON GOD'S GREEN EARTH IS JAMIE FIGHTING???? The man just had surgery - his hand is dripping blood - and he's fighting Hessians! Is there no rest for the weary?! Or people who have recently had their person cut into with a scalpel??? This is insanity! For the first time since Outlander, I'm seriously considering the fact that Jamie Fraser could die. And I'm SCAIRT!!!!!!!

PS - Jamie better hope he dies on that field... because Claire is going to KILL HIM when she sees that hand!!!

So Much to Say

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read Chapter 64 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

I have been underlining like crazy lately. I should blog while I'm reading, but it's so good, I canna stop to blog! I'm going to post the lines I've underlined and give you my thoughts on them. I mean NO disrespect or copyright infringement by posting these lines from An Echo in the Bone, ken?

"his own mother made a dish from the flesh of wine and apples, beswimming in red wine and spiced with nutmeg and cinnamon, that made his mouth water only to remember."   OK am I the only person whose own mouth watered when I read this? I'll admit it. I love me some swine (or "pig's ass" as one of my Kosher girlfriends from college called it.)

"unlike most wives, Claire would have a place to go if something befell him." Really Jamie? Really? Where exactly is she going to go? Back to the Ridge? Or is she going to move in with Fergus and Marsali? Because surely you dinna mean she's going back through the stones if something happens to you. C'mon. Think rationally you big, stubborn Scot. And for God's sake; DINNA DIE.

"It was twilight and the world was full of shadows". I'm loving all the mentions of the word "twilight" lately. It's one of my favorite words in the universe. It holds such possibility. (And it reminds me of Edward Cullen.)

Execution left a stain upon the air and marked the souls of those who saw it.  This is probably the most profound statement Diana Gabaldon - or quite possibly anyone - has ever made.  When I went to the Tower of London, I was overcome by this incredible feeling. It was an eerie, creepy feeling of death that made you feel like you'd drown in it if you didn't find your way out of the place. There is a stillness there; you can feel their pain. So many souls whose lives were ripped away from them in an instant - in unfathomable ways. There are ravens all over the grounds... with their watchful eyes... and I remember saying I felt like the souls of all the dead were trapped inside the ravens.  The only other time in my life I've ever felt that indescribable, smothering feeling was in October 2001 when I saw the remains of the World Trade Center. The same feeling of sadness and grief was overwhelming. That is the stain that execution leaves upon the air... and I've tried to explain it so many times - to no avail. And then Diana Gabaldon comes along and just puts it into a handful of words... so eloquently. She blows my mind.

"Ye need spectacles, don't ye? I hadna realized." Oh how I loved this scene. She knows he's right - and she's fighting him on it - and she finally gives in - and then turns the tables on him. And all I'm thinking is "Wow Claire, you're lucky you made it all the way to 60! Most people find their eyesight going at around 45!"  And how in god's name is she doing intricate surgery on Jamie's HAND?! I was surprised he didna bring that up when she was inventorying her wee scalpels.


"I paused and shouted into the mist, calling his name. I heard answering calls, but none in his voice."  Oh my god - when I got to this part, I almost fell off the treadmill. You can totally see this happening right in front of you. What a POWERFUL scene. The dead and dying, lying all around, and Claire is literally stepping over them, calling Jamie's name and hearing nothing in response. I can't even talk about it because I truly felt sick when this happened - a la when Roger Mac was hangit. "I'm sorry for your man," I said. "but my man lies here. Get away, I said!" Oh good god I might cry again. Diana - you take as much time as you like to write your books, lass, because my GOD - the research that goes into them is incredible. Who knew it was like this? Who knew wives and children were coming along, looting the dead? Don't get me wrong - I get it. Hell, I watch that soldier taking everyone's gold teeth out on The Pacific every week. But wives and children??  AND - the fact that they had to bury the bodies deep enough so the wolves wouldn't get them?? Who knew?! THIS is why DG's books are so good. She does her homework. I'd rather her take 10 years to write a book - and do it as well as she does - than read something someone cranked out in 4 months with no thought or integrity. Blech.

"Ye've the tongue of  a venomous shrew," he said, "but your a bonnie wee swordsman, Sassenach."  This is CLASSIC JAMIE FRASER! I LOVE IT!!!

"Anyone seen that big redheaded bastard who broke the charge?"..."Whoever he is, I tell you, he's got balls the size of ten-pound shot."  I LOVE JAMIE FRASER. Have I mentioned that lately? In his late 50s and yet he's still THE MAN on the battlefield.

"Having a good hand on your arse always makes me feel steady." Again - classic Jamie. I get a little thrill every time I read a line like this.

OK that's it for now. I have underlined more... but I should save some for later. Besides - I have to go read. But I have one quick thing to tell you about where I am now:

HAMISH!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 3, 2010

Another Great Chat - and a Great Casting Video!

Thanks to everyone who came to chat tonight! As always, I love chatting with you lassies. You guys give such great insights about the series. I always feel a little sad when it's time to sign off!

And a special thanks to Jeanie who suggested this casting video for Outlander. Wow. Double wow. It's REALLY good. Enjoy!

Outlander Chat Tonight

Don't forget My Outlander Purgatory Chat tonight at 9PM Eastern! We'll be discussing up to and including Chapter 59 in An Echo in the Bone!

Videos from Jamie Fraser's Birthday!

Oh boy. Is ALL I've got to say. And - the Henry Ian Cusick lassies are going to crack up at Video #4....







Sunday, May 2, 2010

"Here's Tae Us!"

SPOILER ALERT: Dinna read unless you have read chapter 57 in AN ECHO IN THE BONE. 

I have to apologize for being all over the place in this blog entry. Once you've seen yesterday's videos, you'll wonder if I was hung over whilst typing this. And I assure you, I'm not. God bless large bottles of water when one is juggling both Pinot Grigio AND Scottish Whisk(no e)y - all for the sake of James Alexander Malcolm Mackenzie Fraser - and good, amusing Youtube video. ;)

William's cousin Henry is wounded and holed up at Mrs. Woodcock's house. She clearly is diggin' on him... and I'm guessing the feelings are mutual. What I don't know is how they met... or why she's not with Mr. Woodcock who is most likely dying out in the wood with the captured militia.

OK so tell me I wasn't sitting on the edge of my seat while reading about Rob Cameron's friend, the archeologist?? He's digging around Lallybroch and I'm all "Oh god! Oh god! He's going to find something! Something Jamie left! Or something Jenny left! Ahhhh!" But alas, he didna find anything. And it's probably just as well because I dinna know if my wee heart could have taken it if he had found something bad/sad. I am also not convinced he won't find something in the future. I mean - why bring an archeologist into the story if you're not going to need him for something in the future, right???

So William left the Hunters (I can't help seeing Mr. Hottie Denzel Washington every time I hear the name Denzell) and caught up with the British army - and alas - a fellow named Brigadier Fraser. And I will pat myself on my own back when I tell you I immediately texted Tracey and told her I was willing to bet it was Simon, down from Canada. I knew I had read about the real Simon Fraser and how he fled to Canada after Culloden... and eventually made his way back to Scotland and bought most of his property back - but I wasna sure if he was in the British army. Soooo anyhoo... it was him and he is asking William to dine at his table, which I have convinced myself is because William is BLOOD OF HIS BLOOD and there is a true connection that neither of them understands. Kindof like one of those stories you hear on 60 Minutes where two people have been next door neighbors and best friends for 35 years and find out they're brothers. Yeah. So anyway - I'm VERRA interested to see how - if at all - Simon Fraser factors into "the rest of the story".

Moving right along to one of THE HOTTEST scenes I have EVER read in this series - yeah - you know what I'm talking about:  YOU. COME  HERE. NOW. (Jenn M emailed this AM and was seriously thrilled to have read that scene. Can you blame her?) That was tremendous. Although, I'll tell ya, I couldn't enjoy it enough because I was too worried they were going to get caught. And getting caught doing the deed would have been one thing - but to get caught doing yourselves - well that would be quite another. I love how Diana always has Jamie stop - right in mid coitus - and tease the heck out of Claire - only to start up again and make her see stars. All men should be taught to do that, don'tcha think?

Any men reading this? What say you???

Anyway - I loved when Jamie said "Play with fire and ye may get singed, Sassenach". Sigh. More murmuring. I could read an entire novel of Jamie Fraser's fornicatory murmuring. 

One of my favorite Bree/Roger scenes:

"Here's tae us. Wha's like us?"
  "Damned few," she replied in broad Scots, "and they're all deid."

Reminds me of one of my husband's family parties when the celtic and Irish music is blaring ("FINE GIRL YOU ARE!") and everyone is having a good time and getting a little looped... and the Irish or Scottish "sayings" start coming out. Always a good time.

Loved when Claire noticed that no one gets yeast infections because no one wears underwear. I don't know why but that cracked me up. I'm going to make a little bet with you that when Shannon gets to that part, she's going to think it's hysterical. I'll let you know.

So anyway - Claire was taken by the British army and met up with William - and I almost had a heart attack. Of course I texted Tracey immediately. (I should really find all of last night's texts and post them as I'm sure they're pretty darned hilarious.) I cannot tell you how this suspense of "when is Jamie going to see William - and more importantly when is William going to see Jamie" - is killing me. I have said since Day 1 of this book that Jamie and William will eventually be on opposite sides of the battle field - and I'm terrified that William is going to reject Jamie when he finds out he's his da. I don't know if he'll be bratty about it "I'm the 7th Earl of Ellesmere!" or just upset or what. And it will kill Jamie if he's mean. And if he utters ONE NEGATIVE WORD about the beard - he's a dead man. I know it will take time for him to accept Jamie. But eventually he will - just like Brianna. I know it.

"A woman takes life with her when she goes. A woman is... infinite possibility".    Died. Right there. Just died.

I LOVED when Jamie was touching Claire's hand and tracing the lines and her "J" scar. And she said "I'd held him in my hand for the best part of my life".

Oh god. I have to stop now. It's all gotten soooo good. I need to read...

Four Greatest Words Ever Spoken:

YOU.
COME HERE.
NOW.

(Jenn M gets credit for this one, lassies.)

Saturday, May 1, 2010

The Birth of Our Laird!

Happy Birthday James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser!!!

Take your time about it, aye?