Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone by Diana Gabaldon

When you get to the 9th book of a series you have already spent hours with the characters, the story, and in some way the author. You feel like you’re coming home, even if “home” is a strange, half-familiar echo of the past with some murder and time-travelling and brave Scots fighting for their new home thrown in.

Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone

The past may seem the safest place to be . . . but it is the most dangerous time to be alive. . . .

Jamie Fraser and Claire Randall were torn apart by the Jacobite Rising in 1746, and it took them twenty years to find each other again. Now the American Revolution threatens to do the same.

It is 1779 and Claire and Jamie are at last reunited with their daughter, Brianna, her husband, Roger, and their children on Fraser’s Ridge. Having the family together is a dream the Frasers had thought impossible.

Yet even in the North Carolina backcountry, the effects of war are being felt. Tensions in the Colonies are great and local feelings run hot enough to boil Hell’s teakettle. Jamie knows loyalties among his tenants are split and it won’t be long until the war is on his doorstep.

Brianna and Roger have their own worry: that the dangers that provoked their escape from the twentieth century might catch up to them. Sometimes they question whether risking the perils of the 1700s—among them disease, starvation, and an impending war—was indeed the safer choice for their family.

Not so far away, young William Ransom is still coming to terms with the discovery of his true father’s identity—and thus his own—and Lord John Grey has reconciliations to make, and dangers to meet . . . on his son’s behalf, and his own.

Meanwhile, the Revolutionary War creeps ever closer to Fraser’s Ridge. And with the family finally together, Jamie and Claire have more at stake than ever before.

Summary from Goodreads

In the 8th book we experienced a homecoming and Gabaldon picks up right where she left off in Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone. One of the things I admire about Gabaldon’s writing is the way she uses time in her books. She covers years, but it doesn’t feel like it. Things happen fast, but also very slowly, and she has made the Outlander series a mystery, a historical epic, a light fantasy, and a domestic drama set in the 18th century all in one series. She carries this on into her 9th book, and so we get to see Jamie and Claire and Brianna and Roger and Ian and Rachel at home, at war, in love, in a fight, together, apart . . .

Gabaldon is definitely writing for a certain type of reader. The kind of reader who likes their stories both detailed and bold, epic and domestic, who would be interested in the fine details. With the amount of research that she must do to bring the world of Outlander alive, I not only respect the effort as a reader, but as a writer as well I’m a little bit in awe.

This latest installment in the Outlander series was satisfying, enthralling, and such a good book that it led right into my latest bout of reader depression. Thankfully, these never last long, and I know for certain that it would immediately disappear when the next book in the Outlander series is published. I’m waiting in anticipation!

As I’ve mentioned, my reader depression doesn’t last long, often, so look forward to my review of Writers and Lovers and Deal with the Devil, my first two official reads of 2022!

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