Recently, I’ve been completely caught up in the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon. I remember hearing about these books years ago when attending a writer’s conference, but I only recently began to watch the series and revisit the books in more detail. No surprise, but they are spectacular! And, as I get pulled into this series and into the lives of the characters that I have come to know and love, I can’t help but think about how and why I believe she has done such a incredible job in writing the books. For this reason, I want to go into more detail as to what are some essential things that make a book or books so enjoyable.
First off, you’ve got to have great characters that make your readers feel. The ultimate tortured hero, the headstrong heroine, the villain you hate oh so much—Gabaldon does such a great job with this.
Second, you need a credible plot or at the very least realistic reactions to what is happening. In Outlander, Gabaldon’s main characters travel though time and while that sounds crazy, what makes it work is that the characters believe it crazy as well. Additionally, she doesn’t purely shine light on the good qualities of the time period or her characters but in fact also magnifies the flaws of individuals and the absurdities that the dealt with traveling to different times.
Finally. I will highlight how all of Galbaldon’s historical accuracy and detail truly made her series all the more fascinating and believable. Nothing pulls a reader out of a story faster than a book with huge gaps in logic or tons of errors when making historical references, unless the author makes it clear they have some reason for doing this and that it is part of the storyline.
Bottomline, a good book can take some effort but Gabaldon’s Outlander series is an example this paying off. Happy writing this week!