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138 Reviews
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most believable historical fiction - bar none
I stumbled across this book in line at the grocery store and quickly became addicted to the entire Outlander series. I've bought them as gifts for family and friends innumerable times. The attention to detail in all of Ms. Gabaldon's books is eerie - in short it makes you wonder if time travel is indeed possible. Calling these books romance novels is unfair because...
Published on May 18 2003 by Leslie

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars definately interesting
I just wanted to say that I liked this book for what it is-a companion to the novels. As a "die-hard" fan, I can honestly say that for me it was really neat to find out how the characters developed, and how she had help with Gaelic and the other languages that she knows very little or nothing about. I personally didn't like the horoscopes, but I'm not into...
Published on Aug. 13 1999


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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most believable historical fiction - bar none, May 18 2003
By 
Leslie (Appleton, WI USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: The Outlandish Companion: In Which Much Is Revealed Regarding Claire And Jamie Fraser.... (Hardcover)
I stumbled across this book in line at the grocery store and quickly became addicted to the entire Outlander series. I've bought them as gifts for family and friends innumerable times. The attention to detail in all of Ms. Gabaldon's books is eerie - in short it makes you wonder if time travel is indeed possible. Calling these books romance novels is unfair because there is so much more to them than your standard bodice ripper. The characters are complex and believable and the dialogue is intelligent and often humorous. At roughly a 1,000 pages per book it's certainly not light reading for the beach but they're so engrossing you'll likely not notice whether the sun is out or not...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars definately interesting, Aug. 13 1999
By A Customer
I just wanted to say that I liked this book for what it is-a companion to the novels. As a "die-hard" fan, I can honestly say that for me it was really neat to find out how the characters developed, and how she had help with Gaelic and the other languages that she knows very little or nothing about. I personally didn't like the horoscopes, but I'm not into that kind of thing. Anyway, if you are looking for an interesting and informative read that can give you some insight into how she does reasearch and other things, then please read this. If you don't like that kind of thing, then don't buy it.
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars excessive, July 1 1999
By A Customer
I have enjoyed all of Mrs. Gabaldon's novels (perhaps I should be honest and say that the last one was a bit of a disappointment, but still generally quite good), and I do very much admire her style of writing. But I'm afraid I don't understand the frenzy around this book. Astrological charts for fictional characters seems rather redundant to me, for example. In fact, I am rather disturbed by the tone of the other reviews. Little to do with constructive commentary and more to do with group hysteria, it seems. I would have prefered Mrs. Gabaldon to write another novel, rather than spend her time on this rather strange documentation for people who are, after all, products of her imagination.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars If you like to read dictionaries and encyclopedias..., Dec 5 2000
By A Customer
No seriously, I could understand how many a fan would devour anything by Diana Gabaldon and I thought I was one of those people; but The Outlandish Companion was something I could have done without. I enjoyed her personal story about how she got started with the series but other than that I struggled through it. The recommended books section; which was the main reason I purchased this book, was a disappointment. I hated many of the books I picked from the list in the back of the companion. I get the impression that Ms. Gabaldon is very intellectual. I just think I'll wait patiently for the rest of the books in this series.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars I Thought It Would Be Better, July 27 1999
By A Customer
I read the synopsis of this book before I ordered it. Yet, I was still disappointed. I agree with many of the reviews already posted - money making scheme, poorly compiled, extraneous info, repetive info, etc. I, like many reviewers like the Outlander series, but I still found that this book was a disappointment. If I want a horoscope of a fictional character, I can have my niece do it with her pc program. But, what bothers me most is the tone of so many fans. I read all of the reviews here and none of the reviewers who gave this book less than five stars criticized other reviewers or other fans. Isn't this a site to review books honestly? Somebody doesn't like your idol's book, so what? Get over it. I have never seen this type of immature behavior related to any other books reviewed on Amazon. Frankly, if this is an indication of how Amazon is going to monitor this site in the future, I will be placing my orders with other outlets. There is absolutely no reason that someone should not be able to post an honest review without being attacked by...what did one of the reviewers call it...Trekie-like Outlander fans. By the way, my entire office orders in bulk at least once a month and there are plenty of other online sites where this type of behavior is not tolerated.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars poorly organized and redundant, Aug. 18 1999
By A Customer
This volume might have been interesting, if not for the fact that certain obvious steps were overlooked -- such as an alphabetical listing of terms. It felt rushed, as if the author is juggling too much. And for a woman who supposedly has advanced degrees in science, the astrological charts are more than a little incongruous. I found the novels interesting and well told, but this is going too far.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Background to the Outlander series, Feb. 1 2002
By 
Kevin W. Parker (Greenbelt, MD) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
There are many background elements to the Outlander series: characters, history, food, Gaelic sayings. This is an attempt to cover a lot of them as well as to discuss how Gabaldon came up with the books and its elements.
I shouldn't really take full credit for this book, but it's long enough that I'm not going to feel very guilty about it. I skipped over the synopses of the novels and skimmed the list of sayings and vocabulary words fairly quickly. More interesting was the Q&A, particularly since she got the original inspiration from Jamie on Doctor Who. (I'm a big fan of Doctor Who.) It's also interesting to see how seriously she takes the whole effort: even though she was originally just writing for herself, she took it very seriously and worked hard to do the best job she possibly could.
Most impressive is how she manages at all: throughout her comments it becomes clear that she gardens, she's a Compuserve volunteer, she records audios for the blind, she goes to church, she has two kids. How the heck does she find time to write? She admits that it's a lot to do with going without sleep. Not sure that's something I'd want to try.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Never read a Gabaldon book before, Sept. 11 1999
By A Customer
A bit of serendipity came my way when I found the Outlandish Companion on the "new arrivals" bookshelf at my local library. My daughter had just begun reading "Outlander" and mentioned Diane's name the day before. A writer myself, I'd like to direct these comments to Ms. Gabladon Herself. My dear, you are a soul-sister. Your playful spirit and intellectual diversity enthralls me. This companion book is a very handy resource for writers and I will buy a hard copy for my own reference. You might want to consider publishing a book just for writers. Obviously, many readers miss the essence of what you have compiled within these pages. Several disgruntled readers complain that the same info can be found online. Humm - so different venues are unnecessary? "Why make a movie - there's already a book?" Good grief. Another reader complained about Amazon carrying certain comments. I hope Amazon continues to print whatever comes in, as it is all rather entertaining to see how emotional people become over such mundanities. Carry on, MacDuff. Work hard, make your millions and do alphabetize the next glossary. Hugs & kisses to you, Diane.
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic COMPANION to the Outlandish series, Aug. 20 1999
By A Customer
I absolutely loved The Outlandish Companion. I think it deserves one star for the Gaelic pronunciations and explanations, a second star for the sketches and pictures (loved seeing Claire's rings!), a third star for the character list, a fourth star for Diana taking the time to answer all of those questions from everyone, and the fifth star for her explanation of where characters come from. I would give her a sixth star for her wit and humor if Amazon gave me that option. I was a little surprised to see how closely the horoscopes matched Jamie and Claire's personalities. Diana didn't write the horoscopes anyway, they were sent to her and she liked them so she included them for anyone who was interested. Who cares that they are fictional characters? Not me. The fact that Diana has made Jamie, Claire & Co. 'real' to so many people is an amazing accomplishment itself. I enjoyed the Companion for the reasons I listed above. Will I read the book cover to cover repeatedly? No. Will I go through it fairly often? Yes. Why? Because it's interesting information and I participate in Outlandish Trivia Games and I could use all the help I can get. My book was worth every penny I spent on it and I hope to someday have it signed along with the rest of my books. Great job Diana and I look forward to books 5 & 6 as well as the next Companion!
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4.0 out of 5 stars A nice "bits and pieces" book, Aug. 20 1999
By 
T. Lorenz (Chicago, Illinois USA) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
I really have enjoyed reading the Companion -- not in the same way that I obsessively stuck my nose into the novels and didn't come up for air 'til the last pages -- but, rather, as a nice "nightstand book," good for reading a page or snippet or chapter at a time.
Sure, there are things I could have lived without (the extensive horoscopes), things I would have loved to see included, but weren't (Steve McManaman!, and just what additional paragraphs were added to "Cross Stitch" that weren't in "Outlander"), and things I would have changed (the foreign phrase dictionary in alphabetical, rather than chronological, order), but those are just my quibbles. On the whole, I found it tremendously entertaining.
I was surprised, when I was reading the synopses of the 4 novels, to learn new things from Diana's summaries -- especially given the fact that I practically have the books memorized! Just for those new insights, the Companion was worth the price.
On the whole, it was what I expected, but bigger, and better, and certainly funnier. It has definitely whetted my appetite for Novel 5...
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