Voyager (novel)

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Voyager
Gabaldon-Voyager-1993.jpg
First edition cover
Author Diana Gabaldon
Country United States
Language English
Series Outlander series (Book 3)
Genre Historical novel
Published 1993 (Delacorte Press)
Media type Print (Hardcover)
Pages 870 pp
ISBN 978-0385302326
Preceded by Dragonfly in Amber
Followed by Drums of Autumn

Voyager is the third 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]

The heroine of the bestselling Outlander, Claire, returns in Voyager as a mother to Brianna Randall and living in Boston in the year 1968. The preceding novel, Dragonfly in Amber, ended with Claire and Brianna coming to grips with the truth of the identity of Brianna's real father, Jamie Fraser, and Claire's travel through time. In Voyager, Claire and Brianna trace Jamie's life since the battle of Culloden during the Jacobite rising of 1745. Discovering Jamie survived the massacre that heralded the destruction of many clans in Scotland sends Claire back to the stone circle that first hurtled her through time - twenty years before.

Plot summary[edit]

1746[edit]

Voyager opens on the battlefield at Culloden, where Jamie Fraser finds himself gravely wounded and Jack Randall dead. Jamie is carried to a nearby farmhouse where 18 Highland men have gathered. Harold Grey, Earl of Melton, arrives as representative of the Duke of Cumberland and announces the survivors will be shot. As each man is led outside to be executed, Melton takes his name for the records. At Jamie's turn, Melton recognizes him as famed Jacobite “Red Jamie”, but is forbidden to execute him because Jamie released his younger brother, Lord John Grey, at Preston rather than kill him. Melton's solution is to send Jamie home, in the expectation that he shall die of his wounds.

When the English scour the country for Jacobite rebels, Jamie hides in a cave near Lallybroch. He visits his sister, Jenny, and her family once a month to shave, wash, and hear news. By invoking a deed of sasine, Jamie signs Lallybroch over to Jenny’s eldest son, also called Jamie, to prevent the English from seizing their home as the property of a traitor. For a brown wool cap he wears to cover his attention-drawing red hair, Jamie becomes a Scottish legend, the “Dunbonnet”, and arranges himself to be captured, whereby his tenants claim the reward and prevent famine among themselves. At Ardsmuir Prison, Jamie becomes the leader of the prisoners under the name of "Mac Dubh". At Ardsmuir, Jamie meets Lord John Grey again as the new governor of the prison. Lord John's predecessor tells him that he invited Jamie to dinner once a week to discuss the other prisoners and suggests that Lord John continue the custom, which he does. John believes that Jamie knows the whereabouts of the French gold allegedly sent to Bonnie Prince Charlie. When the prison is fully renovated, the Crown transports the prisoners to America and uses the former prison as an army barracks; but John has Jamie sent to Helwater in the Lake District, the stud farm of Lord Dunsany, a family friend of Lord John's.

Dunsany has two daughters, whereof the elder, Geneva, is infatuated with Jamie but is betrothed to Lord Ellesmere, an elderly man, and she blackmails Jamie into sexual relations with herself. Geneva leaves Helwater and marries Lord Ellesmere. Nine months later, she gives birth to a boy and dies the next day. Ellesmere tells Lord Dunsany that the baby is not his, and threatens to kill him; but Jamie kills Ellesmere instead. The baby, called William, returns to Helwater with them. In reward for his actions, Lady Dunsany offers to ask Lord John to petition for a pardon so he can go home to Lallybroch. To remain near his son, Jamie refuses, and stays several more years at Helwater, until Willie's resemblance to himself becomes evident, whereupon he accepts the pardon.

1968[edit]

In the 20th century, Reverend Wakefield’s adopted son, Roger MacKenzie, offers to determine Jamie's history. When Roger, Claire, and Claire's daughter Brianna find evidence of Jamie writing an article printed in 1765, Claire considers returning to him, and Brianna supports her. On Halloween of 1968, Claire returns to Jamie's time.

1765[edit]

Claire finds Jamie in Edinburgh under the name of Alex Malcolm, smuggling liquor in the guise of a printers' shop. His nephew, Young Ian, runs away from Lallybroch to “assist” his uncle in the business. Claire is reunited with her friend Fergus. To explain her absence, the family tell everyone that Claire was with relatives in France, believing that Jamie was killed at Culloden, and only just learned that he was alive.

After a failed smuggling run, Jamie takes Claire and Young Ian back to Lallybroch, where Claire discovers that Jamie had married again and has two stepdaughters, Marsali and Joan, and that Jamie's new wife is Laoghaire, who, 20 years earlier, had Claire arrested for witchcraft. Disappointed, she leaves Lallybroch, and Young Ian brings her back, telling her that Laoghaire has wounded Jamie. Upon return, Claire sees that the wound is infected and saves Jamie with antibiotics and syringes brought from the 20th century. Jamie negotiates a settlement with Laoghaire, to pay her 1200 pounds in compensation and to support her until she marries again. To get the money, he, Claire, and Young Ian return to the “seals’ treasure”: the Jacobite gold and jewels buried on an island off of Inverness. When they have the treasure, they plan to go to France and sell the jewels; but Young Ian is kidnapped by a strange ship. Jamie and Claire go to France, where Jamie's cousin, Jared, helps them determine the ship's identity and gives them a ship for the West Indies to rescue Ian. Fergus, and Laoghaire’s daughter, Marsali, go with them.

At sea, their ship is hailed by an English ship called the Porpoise, begging for a surgeon because many sailors are very ill. While Claire is treating the sick, the Porpoise gets under way with Claire on board, and Claire learns that the customs agent searching for Jamie is aboard the Porpoise and plans to have Jamie arrested in Jamaica. Claire escapes to the island of Hispaniola, where she is found by a naturalist studying the island's flora, Dr. Stern, and a bizarre, drunken, defrocked priest. Jamie's ship has run aground on Hispaniola following a storm; but Claire soon learns that Jamie had left them to rescue her. He is captured briefly but escapes and is reunited with Claire.

Jamaica[edit]

Disguised as a Frenchman, Jamie attends a ball for the local governor (his old friend Lord John Grey) and leaves to speak to John privately. A young woman is murdered at the ball and the guests are detained under suspicion. Claire also speaks to John and he tells her that he gave Jamie a portrait of his son, Willie. Jamie and Claire search for Young Ian at a slave market and later at the plantation of a Mrs. Abernathy, whom they identify as the former Geilis Duncan. After their stay with her, Jamie and Claire discover that Geilis has Ian captive. Jamie and his men plan to recover Ian, only to find that Geilis has left and taken Ian with her. Claire visits Geilis' workroom and finds a picture of Brianna nailed to the table, with suggestion of an intended sacrifice of her. After a struggle in a cave on Jamaica, Jamie and Claire escape with Ian. As they sail away from Jamaica, they are chased by the Porpoise again. In a storm, the British ship is lost, and the Scottish ship Artemis is blown off course, and shipwrecked in the American colony of Georgia.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Reese, Jennifer (November 27, 2007). "Book Review: Lord John and the Hand of Devils (2007)". EW.com. Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved October 30, 2013. 

External links[edit]