A Breath of Snow and Ashes

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A Breath of Snow and Ashes
Diana Gabaldon - A breath of snow and ashes.jpeg
Author Diana Gabaldon
Country United States
Language English
Series Outlander series (Book 6)
Genre Historical novel
Published 2005 (Delacorte Press)
Media type Print (Paperback)
Pages 1410 pp (mass market paperback)
ISBN 978-0-385-32416-8
OCLC 61280307
813/.54 22
LC Class PS3557.A22 B74 2005
Preceded by The Fiery Cross
Followed by An Echo in the Bone

A Breath of Snow and Ashes is the sixth book in the Outlander series of novels by Diana Gabaldon. Centered on time travelling 20th-century nurse Claire Randall and her 18th-century Scottish Highland warrior husband Jamie Fraser, the books contain elements of historical fiction, romance, adventure and science fiction/fantasy.[1]

Plot summary[edit]

Claire is the wife of Jamie Fraser, her 18th century husband, and facing the politics and turmoil of the forthcoming American Revolution. The preceding novel, The Fiery Cross, concluded with political unrest in the colonies beginning to boil over and the Frasers trying to peacefully live on their isolated homestead. Jamie is suddenly faced with walking between the fires of loyalty to the oath he swore to the British crown and following his hope for freedom in the new world.


James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser - Laird of Fraser's Ridge, North Carolina. Former inmate of Ardsmuir Prison. Claire's 18th century husband and foster father of Fergus-Claudel Fraser, step-father of Marsali MacKimmie Fraser, and biological father of Brianna and William (although William was conceived out of wedlock and does not know that Jamie is his real father).

Claire Elizabeth Beauchamp Randall Fraser - Main female character whom the series revolves around. Married to Jamie and mother of Brianna, foster mother of Fergus, and step-mother to Marsali.

Brianna Ellen MacKenzie - Jamie and Claire's daughter born in the 20th century and raised by Claire and Franklin Randall. She marries Roger and they have two children: a son, Jeremiah, known as "Jemmy" and a daughter, Amanda.

Roger MacKenzie Wakefield - Jamie and Claire's son-in-law. Married to Brianna and father of Jemmy and Mandy.

Jeremiah "Jemmie" MacKenzie - Roger and Brianna's son (there was some doubt about his paternity but this is now resolved)

Fergus Claudel Fraser - One-time French pickpocket and spy. Jamie and Claire's foster son. First appears in Dragonfly in Amber. Married to Marsali.

Marsali MacKimmie Fraser - Laoghaire's daughter and Jamie and Claire's step-daughter. First appears in Voyager. Married to Fergus and mother to Germain, Joan, Felicitie and Henri Christian.

Germain Fraser - Fergus and Marsali's oldest son.

Ian Murray - Jenny and Ian Murray's son and Jamie's nephew. Was married to 'Emily' Works With Her Hands of the Mohawk, but returns to the Ridge with only Rollo, his half-wolf canine companion.

Lizzie Wemyss - Brianna's bond servant. Joseph Wemyss' daughter. 'Married' to the Beardsley twins.

Joseph Wemyss - Jamie and Claire's bond servant. Lizzie's father.

Malva Christie - Tom Christie's daughter. Arrives at the Ridge at the end of Fiery Cross

Alan Christie - Tom Christie's son. Arrives at the Ridge at the end of Fiery Cross.

Tom Christie - A former inmate of Ardsmuir Prison. Malva and Alan's Father. In love with Claire. Arrives at the Ridge at the end of Fiery Cross

Colonel Lord John William Grey - The former governor of Ardsmuir Prison. Jamie's long time friend. Stepfather of William Ransom, 9th Earl of Ellsmere.

Jocasta MacKenzie Cameron Innes - Sister of Ellen MacKenzie Fraser, Colum and Dougal MacKenzie. Jamie's blind aunt.

Duncan Innes - A former inmate of Ardsmuir Prison. Jocasta's husband.

Stephen Bonnet - An outlaw thief, trader, rapist and smuggler who appears in Drums of Autumn. Smuggles goods along the Carolina coastlines.


A Breath of Snow and Ashes debuted at #1 on The New York Times Hardcover Fiction Best-Seller List in 2005[2][3] and won the Quill Award for Science Fiction/Fantasy/Horror.[4]


  1. ^ Reese, Jennifer (November 27, 2007). "Book Review: Lord John and the Hand of Devils (2007)". EW.com. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 30, 2013. 
  2. ^ "Best-Seller Lists: Hardcover Fiction". NYTimes.com. The New York Times. October 16, 2005. Retrieved October 31, 2013. 
  3. ^ Garner, Dwight (October 16, 2005). "Inside the List". NYTimes.com. The New York Times. Retrieved October 31, 2013. 
  4. ^ "The Quill Book Awards: 2006". TheQuills.org (Internet Archive). Retrieved November 11, 2013. 

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