Sunday, June 29, 2014

Over the River (Near Matson's Ford) and Through the Woods (Between Valley Forge and Philadelphia) to Mother Claire's House We Go!

SPOILER ALERT:  I have read 21 Chapters in Written in My Own Heart's Blood.  

Gather 'round now, chitlins, 'cuz mama's got a lot to talk about, mmmkayyy?  Talk amongst yourselves...I'll give you a topic:  St. John's Wort is neither a saint, nor a wart.  Discuss!!

First of all...  Ooooh wheee!  That Willy is all kinds of messed up in the head right now, is he not?!  Boyfriend's walkin' around...all disheveled...trying to keep up this facade of being rich-folk...when in all actuality, hereditarily speaking, he doesna have a pot to pee in!  (Unless it's the lady Arabella-Jane's chamber pot...and he's too highfalutin to peep on top of her low-class peeps so soon after she peeped 'em!)

The story of Willie's life.
OK so seriously.  Here's a guy who has been told - his entire life - that he's special.  And rich.  And all of a sudden...BAM!  He ain't worth a dime - figuratively AND literally.  It's got to be completely overwhelming and all-encompassing, no?  You really have to put yourself in William's position to understand why I feel such empathy for him.  His entire world is a lie.  His mother is not his mother.  His father is not his father.  And the very people who raised him and were supposed to protect him have been lying to him all those years.
You think I've got it
should see the Earl of Ellesmere!
This poor kid is a ticking time bomb!!  He makes Dallas in The Outsiders look like he's out for a stroll at the convenience store parking lot!!  I don't blame him one bit for hating Jamie Fraser.  (Nor does Jamie, I might add.)

But Ian?  WEE Ian?!? better back the eff UP.  I will NOT tolerate you hauling off and hitting Ian in the mouth...and then being all snooty and righteous and telling the officers HE started it.  Well nanny nanny noo noo, ya poor bugger.  I don't feel the least bit sorry for ya when ye act like a child.  Hell, my 9 year old wouldn't play THAT blame game...and he invented it!  His sister does everything wrong..."I don't know" leaves his stuff around the house...and "somebody" moved it when he can't find it.  Believe me - I know a good bit about acting like a child...and William's doing a rip-roarin' job.

Hey Rachel...
Want a piece of this?
And how about Miss Rachel being all bedroom eyed over Ian's fine arse in the woods...or his johnson private parts under the loin cloth breechclout for that matter!  Girlfriend is in HEAT!  I love it!  Quaker or no, she knows one fine piece of homely, skinny ass when she sees it!  I found it totally bittersweet when Herself said Rachel just liked to talk to Ian...and look at his face (so paraphrasing but you get the gist).  I love that he's found someone who's so gaga over him that she just wants to stare at him.  But it made me sad to think of his face being tattooed forever...and her probably being sad for him, even though he's not sad for himself.  I think those tattoos would probably make me love him more...because it would make him seem vulnerable in a way.  (And we all know how much Carol loves vulnerability in her fictional men!)

Honestly, it kills me to not know what Wee Ian looks like.  I wish someone would sit Diana Gabaldon down with a sketch artist and make her draw him for us.  I've always seen him like Joe Mazzello...but I'd love to know how she sees him (along with sooo many other characters!)

It also pains me to hear Ian rehashing and reliving "Emily" in his mind while filling Rachel in on all the sordid deets.  Ahem...cough bloort coughhhh!!!

Excuse me, I just threw up in my mouth a little at the mere thought of that awful woman.

Why, yes!  That is my nephew who
thinks I'm dead.  Thanks for asking!
OK getting back to the matter at hand.  Jamie...cruising along Lancaster Avenue  Route 30  Lincoln Highway  the main road to Philadelphia, on someone's wagon.  Like an even hotter, red-heided Pa Ingalls - trying to get back to she can tell him just what she was thinking about, sleeping with Lord John, which he finds somewhat Mary McNabbesque.  (Not sure I remember him meeting back up with Mary for a little third base after that...a la Claire and Lord John...but why split hand jobs hairs).  I have to be honest - I don't really want Claire to get off that easy (pun intended!)  but - again - it's almost easier to write it off than spend a ton of time dwelling on it...just like the situation with Jenny.

So here's Jamie, riding along...and there is FRIGGIN IAN WHO THINKS HE'S DEAD walking alongside of him!!!  Oh holy hell - I sat right up (in my lounge chair by the pool where I was ignoring my family all afternoon) and said "No WAY!!!!!"  (I can't WAIT until we see Ian realize Jenny's still alive, too!!)  And poor Rachel is running alongside the gaggle of lobsterbacks...trying to keep track of where they're taking her Scottish Mohawk man.  (Um, did Ian not tell you to go to Mother Claire and help him get out of this mess?  So whatcha doin' still here, missy??) And then SHE looks at Jamie and almost falls the hell over...which is beyond deliciously fun, no?!

And when Jamie blackmails Willie and thinks to himself "Oh shiz - I couldna even take him!"???  Oh that just did it for me.  I am as entrenched as anyone can be at this point.

Yup.  I'm knee-deep in NEW GABALDON!!!  

It's like Christmas morning when you've unwrapped all your new toys and you love everything...but you've only tested out a few so far and they couldn't tear you away from these new toys if they tried.

A few quick points:  

- Kindof glad we have't heard from Mother Claire and Hal in the last few chapters.  I needed a break from Hal's asthma and Claire's ministrations.

- Love the complexity of the situation with Ian and Rachel...and Denny and Dottie for that matter.  Religious tradition and its upheaval in one's life always spices up a storyline.

- All y'all have no iDEA how juicy all this Philadelphia burbs stuff is.  Valley Forge...Matson's Ford (which is current day Conshohocken, y'all)...Brandywine...Jethro Woodbine (as in Woodbine Avenue)'s like Diana Gabaldon was in my class at St. Norbert's and went on all the field trips with me.  Something tells me she didn't sing quite as loudly and obnoxiously as I did on the bus rides there and back...but I digress.

- Jamie has always, ALWAYS acted like a father to William.  So many instances of him showing him tough love...just like a good dad would do.  It warms my heart.  Jamie just walked up to him - grabbed him by the ear (OK not the ear but you know what I mean) - and told him what he was going to do...because it was the RIGHT thing to do.  I have such love for this sad little non-relationship, I canna conTAIN myself.  I can only hope they forge some type of bond going forward, after Willie stops feeling sorry for himself and doing hookers because they insist upon it while being saved from a good buggery.

- Lord John.  Lorddddddd Lord John.  Oy.  That dumb shit has now been taken by yet another band of rebels.  (Oh hush - you know I love him.  He's like family.  That's what family does.  We make fun of each other.  Tracey calls me dumb all the time.)  At least this time he's got the smarts enough to lie about his identity...and tone down the hoity toity English accent.  I can only hope for his sake that he left his sarcastic quips back at camp with Den and Dot.

I know I'm forgetting a ton of good stuff but that's what happens when you read, read, read...which I have been doing today.  I am getting to that point where I have no choice but to read, no matter how hard to try to ration my NG (New Gabaldon).

The force is strong with this one, my friends.  

Thursday, June 26, 2014

A Quick Mention...

SPOILER ALERT:  Dinna read unless you've read Chapter 16 in Written in My Own Heart's Blood.

I FINALLY was able to sit down and read this afternoon...and no sooner did I start than I had to STOP.  And blog.

"He had in fact suggested that they walk together to Matson's Ford..."

Tracey and I went to high school on Matsonford Road.  The mentions of the Battle of Brandywine, Valley Forge, The Paoli Massacre were one thing...but Matson's Ford?  This is getting to be too much (in an awesome way.)  It's like Christmas for my eyes.

Tracey says it's like Diana Gabaldon was living under our childhood home's stairs like Harry Potter.  (I almost soiled myself at that thought...but I digress.)

SO - I thought it would be cool to create a MOBY MAP, showing locations in MOBY as I come across them in the book.  There will be a few that might not be mentioned in the book...but were involved in situations in the book...and after growing up in the area, are places that are near and dear to my heart.

I'm hoping those of you who don't live anywhere near Pennsylvania or New Jersey who have never visited these locations will really enjoy getting "the feel" of the book.


Monday, June 23, 2014

15 Down...5 Zillion Dreamy Chapters to Go

Spoiler Alert:  I have read 15 chapters in Written in My Own Heart's Blood!  (I still canna believe I'm saying that.  I never thought this day would come!) 

WOW.  What a difference four years make!

As I've told some of you already, I am not racing through MOBY.  No way.  I mean to take my time about it, aye?  There is no way I'm going to race through this puppy and sit around bewildered and rocking back and forth in my happy place until the next one comes out.  If I had the willpower, I'd read half a page a day until Book 9!!!

Remind me I said all of this when I'm halfway through the book in a few days and whining to you all about this or that (she says with a wave of her hand.  Is it me or does everyone wave their hands a lot in MOBY??  It makes me giggle and wonder if DG does a lot of hand-waving at home to her poochies and my best friend, Doug.)

OK...SO...I am going to give a quick synopsis of what I've read so far.  This is the Reader's Digest version as I left off at a juicy part and must go read.

First off...I have the sickest love/hate relationship with Lord John.  One minute I'm all "Oh I loveeee Lord Johnnnn...he's so witty (and pretty...and gayyyy!)" and the next I'm thinking "You snotty English bastard.  Jamie should have killed you when he had the chance."  Now poor Jamie's laid up in poor Mrs. Whatshername's cot with pain shooting up through his left but-tock (said like Forrest Gump) while Lord John is laid up with the indent of Jamie's knuckles in his upper cheekbone.

One does notice the parallel, does one not?

It's a good thing those girls came back with sausage and the makings for johnnycakes because I did NOT want to think about our beloved Jamie with a void in his wame.

And could I have LOVED IT MORE when he was sittin' round the table, kabitzing with the likes of Washington and Mad Anthony Wayne???  Oh it was positively DELISH for our history dorks lovers.  I could SMELL the woodsmoke!!!!

And by the way, I watch MY Washington is smokin' hot.

Now on to Claire.  I've waited four+ years to say this Lordddddddd Claire!  Girl...can you ever stop your ministrations, even when the person receiving said ministrations could possibly get you killed?  No, I suppose not.  And I've always loved Hal so I'm hardly bothered by his being fed some lovely cannabis tea.  It would have been classic if Claire cut to the chase and lit up a bone.  (How much would you love to witness a mutual Claire/Hal high, resulting in high-pitched cackling a la JoBeth Williams in Poltergeist?!  Oh that would have made my DAY!!!)

And is it me?  Or is Jenny the greatest comic relief to come down the pike since Laugh In?!?  I have done a complete ONE EIGHTY on this woman!!!  I HATED her at the end of Echo...and now I canna WAIT until she shows up in a scene!  I want to THANK Diana Gabaldon for burying that hatchet so quickly and not making us wait around through some stupid girl-fight between Jenny and Claire.


And I want to know what's going on down at that print shop, too.  She keeps excusing herself to go down there and find out what's going on.  I mean...dinna get me wrong, I'd be making every excuse in the book to go hang out with Fergus as well...but still.  The Brits are leaving, man.  It's not safe out there!!!

Off to read, y'all.  A girl can only stand so much!!!

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Monday, June 16, 2014

MOP Chat Cancelled Tonight

Tracey and I have decided to cancel MOP Chat this evening to give everyone a chance to continue reading MOBY without the threat of spoilers.  We are also headed to see Diana Gabaldon at the Free Library in Philadelphia tomorrow...and plan to stop by some of the locations in MOBY.  You know...Valley Forge...Wayne (named for Anthony Wayne)...and what's that other town??  Oh yeah...


Be afraid.  And be expecting some amusement on MOP in the next few days as I have every intention of blogging/vlogging about our trip!!!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

A Very Special Spoiler Message

I am a spoiler freak.  The slightest thing can really mess with my brain while I'm reading.  Some people are fine with knowing that "something happens" on chapter __ or page __.  Not me.  The mere suggestion of anything - no matter how small or insignificant it seems to others - throws my cranium into a tailspin.  Why?  Because I like the element of surprise.  I don't want to find myself looking for - or waiting for - something to happen.  And it doesn't matter how small the situation is; I don't want to know so much as what type of soap Jamie is washing his hands with.  It's just the way I operate.  THANK YOU SO much, you awesome fellow Outlander peeps, for understanding.  :)

Shazam! Here We Go Again!

SPOILER ALERT:  Dinna read unless you have reached 4% in Written in My Own Heart's Blood! (Still canna believe I actually have it.  It's like a dream.) 

Before I talk MOBY, let me just say that I am not rushing through this book.  If I had any guts at all, I'd be like MOP bud, Tonya and wait until a few months before Book 9 comes out to read MOBY.  It is beyond enthralling to know you have unread Gabaldon at the ready. will power is in the toilet...and I was sneakily peeking at 3AM the morning the book came out.

Soooo...that's why I'm only at 4%.  (Well that and the cray cray last two weeks of last-weeks-of-school mom hell I'm living this week and next.)

Let's go over a few points about what I've already read, shall we?

1 - TURTLE EFFING SOUP, PEOPLE!!!!  Could Diana have given us a better gift this early in the story than reminding us of Claire feverishly biting the berth?  No, no she could NOT!  (jumps up and down and claps hands) It was 3 AM and there it was, jumping off the page like manna from the heavens.  And for that I'm truly grateful.

2 - Here's me - in tears - at 3AM on Tues - reading about Jamie tapping the tune of the lone ranger on the door.  THAT - alone - was worth 4 years, if you're truly a Jamie Fraserphile such as myself.

No, I'm not playing a cool cat in LA!
I'm playing a Revolutionary War dude!
3 - LIBERTY CAPS!!!  Do we not swoon over Abraham Woodhull (Jamie Bell) in his liberty cap on Turn every Sunday?!  Love that!!

4 - Jethro Woodbine.  There is a "Woodbine" avenue in Philadelphia.  Just had to point that out.  Miss Erin (MOP Chat Frequent Flyer) will giggle when she sees this.

5 - "he was weeping savagely, tears running down his own face, and his wet, half-hard cock flopping out of his breeches."  This.  THIS is why I love William.  He's such a conundrum.  He's so perfect on the outside while being vulnerable (and downright clueless sometimes) on the inside.  He's like a wide-eyed child, trying so hard to be important...but the harder he tries, the sillier he appears.  It's impossible for me not to find him completely endearing, no matter what attitude he's spewing or sticky situation he's gotten himself into on any given day.

(Just realized how the above quote would look to someone who has never read the book.  I swear, it's not porn!  Read the series!!)

I wonder if Jenny and Claire will ever
go shopping for trendy duds and lip gloss. 
I want to throw a genuine Thank You out there to Diana Gabaldon for not making us suffer though a long, drawn-out rift between Jenny and Claire.  It would have been exhausting, and it's completely refreshing to see Jenny being so sisterly to Claire (who undeniably needs a lil' love right now).  I am totally enjoy watching the two of them prattling on like the besties they should be.  I hated hating Jenny; I'm so thrilled to love her again.

Off to read...but must mention this first.  Watching Jamie kick the shit out of Lord John was the most delicious literary fun I've had in eons.  And how exciting was it that their little scuffle was interrupted?  Way to drag it out, DG.  It's like the greatest fictitious foreplay ever.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


You didn't think I'd forget on this holiest of days, did ya? Not ONLY is it MOBY Day...but it's also TOBIAS TUESDAY!! And just feast your eyes on that lusciousness!

My thanks to Connie for directing me toward this amazing photo from the set of Outlander Starz.

Strap on your seatbelts,'s going to be a WILD RIDE!!!


"Waiting by the mailbox in a lawn chair with a bottle of Pinot Grigio" this time?  I don't THINK so!!!  I was reading at 3AM!!!  I am ecSTATic!!  I have so much to say after only 5 chapters!!  


Monday, June 9, 2014

MOP Chat Tonight!

MOP Outlander Chat Tonight  at 9PM Eastern.  

***Absolutely NO MOBY SPOILERS please!!!  :)


This was the scene at the Jersey shore on Saturday in preparation for tomorrow's MOBY commencement! 

Counting Down the Hours Until MOBY!

SPOILER ALERT:  Do NOT read unless you have read An Echo in the Bone and The Space Between

I have been waiting for MOBY for four years...and it's coming out tomorrow.  Midnight, actually, since I ordered it on Kindle.  I am almost numb with anticipation.

NOT to mention that I finished The Space Between - just in time for the occasion.  WOW - was that a fun ending or what??  I am digging Michael and Joan together.  Oh c' know they'll end up together.  Ain't no way girlfriend is going to end up a nun for life.  She seems to have too much need to see the world...even though she doesna know it yet.  And she's also the only one who is able to conjure up some life inside his head - and heart.

To be honest, I was a little bummed after Michael found Joan in the cave.  I kept thinking what an impact his appearance would have made had we not known he was following them.  But then I realized I was wishing the scene had played out more like Christian Grey suddenly appearing in Ana's bedroom...and got totally sceeved at myself for absent-mindedly comparing these two scenes. NOT that I'm a Fifty snob.  Not at's just that comparing a Diana Gabaldon novel to Fifty Shades of Grey is like comparing the most amazing cut of Filet Mignon from the world's finest restaurant to a steamed 3 pack from White Castle.  I love 'em both...but you know what I'm sayin'.

And how about Raymond and the Compte hopping, skipping, and jumping into the 1970s together?!  I'm hoping Jem doesna end up with them in the mine.  Lorddddddd the freakiness.  I hate that the Compte is one of Raymond's "people"...because I was hoping Raymond would dispose of that disgusting "sorcerer"!!  Who knows...maybe he'll surprise us and throw his ass ahead to 2170 when it's time to come home.

Did anyone else parallel Michael's and Joan's year-long wait to be together with Bree and Roger's year long handfasting?  Or was that just me?

HOLY CRAP!!!  I'M GOING TO KNOW JAMIE'S REACTION TO CLAIRE AND LORD JOHN'S DEED-DOING in less than 24 hours!!!  It just hits me every once in a while and I can barely breathe.  FOUR FRIGGIN YEARS!!!  I feel like I'm getting out of jail!!  Can you IMAGINE the breakfast table at houses all 'round the world tomorrow??  Those kids better not so much as look at me, let alone ask for a spoon.  (Did I just say that out loud?)

More to come, lads and lassies...more to come, indeed.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014