Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Wuthering Heights



This was kind of an unusual book. I can't say that I loved it, but I didn't hate it either. I think I didn't love it because a majority of the characters are detestable at some point in the course of the story.

Catherine loves Heathcliff, except when she hates him. She's married to another man, but he doesn't stir her temper, so it's probably better than if she had married Heathcliff. I think that pairing would have resulted in a murder at some point.

The characters that live at Wuthering Heights are usually withdrawn and temperamental, while those residing at Thrushcross Grange are a little calmer and kinder.

Catherine dies after giving birth to a daughter, who ends up named Catherine. Young Catherine is forced by Heathcliff to marry his son Linton, who is really a sickly thing. So Heathcliff ends up with control of both Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange when his son dies. He'd gotten control of Wuthering Heights from Hareton Earnshaw (the rightful owner) by mostly deceit.

I can understand why it's a classic, but I just didn't love it as much as I expected I would.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Voyager


**Book 1 * Book 2**

Ooh, this book was exciting. Claire manages to find Jamie in 18th century Scotland. She goes back through the stone circle to return to him. Mind you, they've been separated for 20 years, and a lot has changed in Jamie's life since then.

She finds him running a printing business in Edinburgh under the name Alexander Malcom (which are two of his middle names). They had previously sworn never to lie to each other, but, during the first few months of their reunion, Jamie is definitely hiding a few things. Like, for example, he's a smuggler. Yeah. Good to know he's been keeping his nose clean since getting out of prison. Oh, and he's also married. To the worst woman he could be married to: Laoghaire. Yay for that. Oh, and just one more, he's had a son by an English woman. The lies kind of got to me. The Laoghaire thing made me angry at Jenny, Jamie's older sister, for forcing him into it.

Then they manage to lose Jamie's 15 year old nephew Ian when he's taken by pirates to the Caribbean. So, let's go across the Atlantic with a man who suffers terrible seasickness (Jamie)! Claire gets commandeered onto an English man-o-war that is suffering from an outbreak of typhoid. They completely make off with her and she ends up jumping ship to escape since they know her husband is a wanted man by the English. Yay!

But the love of Jamie and Claire is still there, still as strong and as sure. Even if Claire is angry and frustrated at Jamie because of his lies by omission. Oh well.

We also get to meet someone who we swore was dead. I'm pretty sure this person is dead now, since Claire severed a head from a body.

I'm still loving this series. I still can't wait to see where it goes next.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Dragonfly in Amber


**Book 1**

The beginning of this book threw me for a loop for a bit. Why? Because Claire Randall is in 1968 with her 20 year old daughter Brianna. She's looking for information on some men who were supposedly at the Battle of Culloden, where the Highlander army suffered a crushing defeat and Charles Stuart was denied all hopes of the throne of Scotland and England. Now, Brianna looks a lot like someone we've met before - Jamie. But, this is Brianna Randall, a girl who is raised by her mother, Claire, and her father, Frank. Only, we all know Frank isn't biologically her father.

That fact is quickly proven by Roger Wakefield, a young man who was once a scrawny little boy asleep in a chair in 1945. Roger finds information about Claire's return to her time in 1948, where she was malnourished and two months pregnant. Yeah. Frank couldn't have been Brianna's father.

Anyway, most of the book is told in a flashback. Claire is finally telling her daughter her story. She is trying to introduce Brianna to her father, Jamie.

The story starts in Paris. Claire and Jamie are trying to thwart Prince Charles as he attempts to raise money for a second Jacobite Rising. Claire is pregnant and miserably sick. Jamie is trying to cope with his pregnant wife when she vomits every morning. Jamie takes over his cousin's wine business almost as a cover for his plans (plus, his cousin had business away from Paris). There are a lot of struggles for the couple.

It starts with angering a rival wine merchant when Claire causes his entire shipment to be destroyed. Then someone tries to poison Claire, someone tries to kill Jamie, someone tries to rape Claire. Jamie meets Jack Randall again and swears to see him dead. Jamie and Jack duel (to rather interesting ends), Jamie ends up in the Bastille. Claire has a miscarriage and basically gives up on life until she's pulled back into the world of the living by a sort of creepy apothecarist that Claire has befriended. Claire has to plead with King Louis to free Jamie, although she doesn't actually want to see or talk to her husband because she blames him for losing the baby. Jamie finds her, they reconcile, they return to Scotland.

In Scotland is where it really starts to go downhill. Jamie learns that Charles has forged an oath from Jamie that he will support Charles' campaign to regain the throne. It angers him because he knows how it will end from Claire. He wants to keep his men from dying. But he can't.

Claire almost dies a few more times in the course of the book. It sucks that she's commonly seen as a witch. She just wants to help people.

Overall, I am still enjoying this series and I'm so excited to see where it goes from here.