Despite being an avid reader and someone who constantly devours books, there is something I almost never do that I’ve found the large majority of readers do: I almost always finish a book that I’m reading!
Even when that book is boring, or slow, or I’m just not feeling it. I find many books to be slow initially, so I always want to give the story time to speed up or become interesting.
So it surprises me to say that I just couldn’t make it through Dragonfly in Amber, the second installment of The Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon!
I found Outlander itself, the first book, to be a pretty good read. Still, there were many times during the book that I felt bored. My interest in it came and went, and the book was a bit of a roller coaster for me in terms of feeling interested in the story and the characters.
And while I definitely enjoyed some parts of Dragonfly in Amber, I’ve just found that I’ve kind of stopped caring about the characters, and the plot, and where this series is going. I’ve been uninterested in this book for months, yet I’ve slowly been making my way through these short chapters that somehow seem to drag.
I didn’t want to quit reading it for many reasons. For one, so many people love this book and the series! My Mom, aunts, and cousins are all making their way through the series and they are way past this second book. Them, as well as people/acquaintances I know, are absolutely in love with this series.
The second reason is that I loved the first half of the first season of the t.v. show Outlander that aired on Starz earlier this year. I’m ready and excited for the second half, and for any additional seasons! So I wanted to keep reading the series along with watching the show.
But the honest truth is that I think this is the very first popular fantasy fiction series that everyone loves…except me. As a girl who is head over heels in love with The Harry Potter series, The Lord of the Rings trilogy, The Wheel of Time series, The Hunger Games, and many more, I didn’t think a time like this would ever exist for me.
The plot throughout these Outlander books just doesn’t seem or feel real enough to me. I feel like things work out so easily for Claire so much of time time. I just haven’t fallen in love with the essence and the energy of the story the way I have with all these other fictional worlds.
A very close acquaintance gave me the book His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman, which is the three books that is The Golden Compass series put into one. I am only on the second chapter of the book, and I am so in love.
The writing is phenomenal, I can feel the magic jumping off the pages at me. I feel curious, and intrigued, and pulled in, and child-like, and I just can’t wait to see what’s going to happen next. And that’s what I was missing from the Outlander series.
That magic, that intrigue, that thirst to lose myself in a fictional world. While there were many parts of Outlander and Dragonfly in Amber that I enjoyed, it just wasn’t enough. It was a good story and the character development was nothing to complain about. But it just…it just wasn’t there for me.
Maybe a day will come when I’ll pick up Dragonfly in Amber again and finish it. I think it’s likely to happen once Starz does start airing the second season. But for now, His Dark Materials has my heart and my eager hands. For now, I’ll just have to be the one person who didn’t find The Outlander Series to be the bee’s knees.