Outlander - Diana Gabaldon I first read this the summer between my freshman and sophomore years of high school and absolutely loved it. I just reread it (seven years later) and again I was hooked and could barely put it down to getIsometric sleep. I can see why it's equally loved and hated by thousands, both emotions often felt by the same reader.

The story holds a lot of parallels with Juliet Marillier's Son of The Shadows. In both, the heroine is a healer who falls in love with an outlaw while being kidnapped by his kinsmen. When her man is taken captive by a sadist prone to torture she has to find a way into the physical prison he's held in as well the one locked inside his mind to heal the unseen injuries from nightmarish abuse.

But while Son of The Shadows is set in ancient Ireland during a time of common belief in magic before the age of widespread Christianity, Outlander is set in eighteenth century Scotland and and Claire Beauchamp is a traveler from the twentieth century, and so cannot reveal her true origin for fear of being accused as a witch. Despite her caution, she is put on trial with a woman she has befriended, a woman who has more in common with Claire than the both of them know.

I enjoy a lengthy book, but some parts were so long-winded I felt my eyes glaze over and had to skip some intensely detailed descriptions to get to where something was actually happening. That said, I didn't mind all the descriptions of the lover, the masculine Jamie Fraser, and the way that Claire wasn't the damsel all the time- sometimes it was him.

However, some cons:
1. Beating your wife with a belt and getting excited while she's angry and in pain. That's just sick.
2. The way the accents were written.
3. The overly-detailed torture rape. I wonder more about the author's leanings toward BDSM than about a character's when someone gets sexually excited during violence more than twice.
4. People were always grabbing Jamie's nads.

If you don't go further than this first installment in the series, that's alright. I've tried and failed to slog through the neverending non-action in subsequent Outlander novels and I'm satisfied just having read the first. Try it, at least. As illustrated by the reviews on this page, you'll definitely have an opinion.