Monday, August 16, 2010

The Exile-Diana Gabaldon and Hoang Nguyen (Illustrator)

The Exile
Diana Gabaldon and Hoang Nguyen (Illustrator)
Del Rey, Sep 21 2010, $25.00
ISBN: 9780345505385

After being in exile from his beloved Scotland for seemingly forever, in 1743 Jamie Fraser is returning home though he knows the danger he will face in war torn Scotland. His godfather Murtagh will do what he can to keep Jamie safe because of a death pledge he made to the lad’s late parents, but he also knows British Captain Black Jack Randall has a large bounty for the head of Jamie.

Meanwhile the MacKenzie clan disputes the return of Jamie. The chieftain Jamie’s Uncle Colum, demands his nephew choose between death and fealty while war chieftain Uncle Dougal demands his death. However, strange, stubborn and beautiful Claire Randall appears out of nowhere; convoluting the return of the prodigal Scot. He saves her life and wants her as does his vicious enemy Randall. Murtagh believes she is an Old Ones’ envoy; Randall asserts she is a spy; the feuding uncles believe she is a danger; and Jamie offers his heart even knowing he has hers in spite of also believing she hides something critical from him.

This graphic rendition of the original Outlander saga is refreshed by Hoang Nguyen’s terrific pictures and told from Jamie’s side as opposed to the original mostly seen from the WWII displaced Claire. The story line is filled with action from the onset, but also lacks the time travel aspects that made the original haunting as the key elements of Claire’s husband is two centuries in the future while she falls in love with the enemy of her spouse’s ancestor remains in the background. Thus this leads to a strong historical saga that fans of the long running series. Readers will appreciate the well written return of the Exile in graphic form; newcomers will enjoy the work, but should start with the original novel (see The Outlander).

Harriet Klausner

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