Tuesday, March 20, 2012

An Echo in the Bone by Diana Gabaldon

An Echo in the Bone

By Diana Gabaldon

Book Blurb:
Jamie Fraser, erstwhile Jacobite and reluctant rebel, knows three things about the American rebellion: the Americans will win, unlikely as that seems in 1778; being on the winning side is no guarantee of survival; and he’d rather die than face his illegitimate son — a young lieutenant in the British Army — across the barrel of a gun. Fraser’s time-travelling wife, Claire, also knows a couple of things: that the Americans will win, but that the ultimate price of victory is a mystery. What she does believe is that the price won’t include Jamie’s life or happiness — not if she has anything to say. 

Claire’s grown daughter Brianna, and her husband, Roger, watch the unfolding of Brianna’s parents’ history — a past that may be sneaking up behind their own family. 

First thing I said to myself after finishing my first re-read of An Echo in the Bone is, 'what was I thinking?!?!' The reason for my self reprimand was because the first time I read this amazing book, I was not pleased. I was not pleased at all. In fact I rated An Echo in the Bone low. Now after just finishing it for a second time and then plugging my Kindle into the wall for a full recharge, I am stunned by my first Goodreads review and I'm about ready to kick my butt and replace with this one. 

Admittedly Echo in the Bone is not my favourite of the series but it is still well deserving of my highest rating possible. I found Echo in the Bone not as emotionally charged or as angsty as the other books in this stellar series.....that is until you get to the end. There are so many cliffhangers dangling from the end of this book that I hope Diana Gabaldon gets so tired of hearing about fans needing the next book pronto that she never leaves a cliffhanger of this magnitude again. I yi yi yi!

What Echo in the Bone does deliver is a close factual account of what life would have been like for the soldiers/militia/army and citizens during the American Revolution war. I walk away with a deep appreciation of the what the people on both sides of the war experienced. The amount of research that went into Echo in the Bone is staggering.  

There are numerous story lines within Echo in the Bone and it is easily followed and paced perfectly. I immensely enjoyed reading each and every one. 

The Roger and Bree story line was well set and planned. I loved that they emotionally struggled a bit when they have returned to Lallybroch. It is a reasonable assumption that they'd have to learn to discover their place and concur the "what's next?" dilemma. Other than the obvious cliffhangers left with the family, I find I am extremely curious and Mandy and her connection with Jem. Small children have an odd way of trying to explain their feelings but I think there is something special with Mandy and Jem. Perhaps it is the seed that was planted way back in Voyager regarding a certain Fraser Prophesy? Regardless, I am desperate to be caught up on the numerous cliffhangers left with the readers. 

Young Ian and Rachel's story line brings me delight. I want nothing more than to have Ian come to terms with himself. Even though Friend Rachel is peaceful Quaker, she is a spitfire and I adore her. I very much want to read how they manage on. 

William. Oh what a way to end the book! I felt I was in utter anticipation the entire book just waiting for a big moment. It was like a fire bomb when that moment came. When is that next book again? 

The biggest story line that threw me for a complete loop was Jamie, Claire and Lord John. Not to reveal any spoilers but I must say, even the second time through Echo in the Bone, I was astonished. I usually don't like to read spoilers of the next book but I must admit, I shall now go forth to see if I can find any tidbits about the next book to hopefully get some more clues about how it all works out. 


Anonymous said...

It took me a while to read this book the first time, and I haven't actually done a re-read yet. Now that I've read all the Lord John books, I think I might appreciate it more.

Thanks for the second review!

Unknown said...

Thanks for stopping by. I can't tell you happy I am that I did that second read. What a difference.

Laurie said...

I have to say that I was astonished that it ended as it did. None of the other books just left the open ends as this one did with Brianna and her family, and Claire, Jamie, Lord John, and William. I had to go back and make sure I didn't skip any parts. Really strange!

Unknown said...

Hi Laurie, I heard that Diana did that because she was flooded with emails after Snow with people wanting to know if it was the last book. She said she ended Echo like that so people would know that there is no doubt another book.
So hard for cliffhangers when we need to wait so long. Worth the wait though.