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Topic of Discussion

Each month we will explore a new discussion question regarding the books and their characters

This Month's Topic:

If you were Claire, would you have looked for Jamie earlier? Do you think her actions were appropriate with what we knew about her, their love, and her character?

Judie: I have run up against brick walls, but I have never gone through any stones, so it's difficult to get a real perspective on how Claire felt after her return trip, eh! :-) But, since Diana wrote the book the way she did, I'd have to go with her version and throw a flag on any other! :-) God, I'm a shameless brown-noser, aren't I?

Kelsey: I wouldn't have looked for Jamie earlier than Claire did. Thrust back into a world full of responsibilities and accusations, I would have wanted to simply put together a life with some semblance of normalness. I think I would have TRIED to forget it ever happened, unsuccessfully. I wouldn't have wanted to find out what had happened until I could share that knowledge with my daughter, I wouldn't want to have any more secrets.

Martha: I think Claire would have wanted to know what happened sooner, because she is courageous about the harsh things in life. Why didn't she? Because if she had, that would have really screwed up the plot of the next 2 books! If it were me, I would've researched Jamie's fate sooner, taken Brianna to the stones, and if she heard them (which of course she would), I would have prepared us both and gone back to find him.

Deb: I think that not looking for Jamie was consistent for Claire's character given the circumstances under which she traveled back through the stones and the circumstances which she found herself in once she was back. I think the only way she could go on without him was to do just that, and get on with her life. She and Jamie were both convinced that he was about to die, if not at Culloden, then at the hands of the MacKenzies. (for murdering Dougal) Also, she could hardly do historical research on the Jacobites without Frank finding out, and that was a sticky situation at best. Just my HO!

Stephanie: Yes, for I wouldn't be able to help myself. Promise or no promise to Frank.

Yes and No. She loved Frank and therefore felt the need to keep her promise to him. However, she knew he was cheating on her and as far as I am concerned, he broke his promise (wedding vow) to her and I feel that Claire had every right to go back on her promise to him and look for Jamie. If I were her, I would have to look. She loves him so greatly that it was torture being without him. Which is why I don't understand why she waited so long. I do not feel that that was characteristic to her nature. She tried so hard to forget him and that I will never understand He is unforgettable and darn well she knows it.

However, she then had Brianna to be concerned with and I know she wouldn't want to put her baby girl through the terror of the stones...if she could even survive passage through them. Not only that, but if she found Jamie and knew he was alive, then she would have to suffer through the temptation of either bringing her daughter through the stones with her, staying with Frank or abandoning Brianna altogether. Claire would have been torn apart at having been faced with the choice. She did what was right for Brianna, but I think she should have looked for Jamie a heck of a lot sooner than she did.

Val: I don't know. I can see how she made her promise to Frank, but the minute he started cheating all bets would've been off. Especially after how much Claire and Jamie loved each other. Just think there could have been three more books covering that time [g!]. I love these books and wouldn't really want to change them but it totally broke my heart when she saw his headstone. That scene makes me cry more than others. I can just imagine her thinking of the lost years together, etc. Especially after living with self-absorbed Frank.

Chris: No. I think, given her circumstances, she did the only thing she could have. LIve out her life with Frank,raise Brianna, and after Frank  died and Brianna was grown she searched for Jamie.

For further discussion, please go to the Ladies of Lallybroch Message Board and state your own opinion.

Next Month's Topic:

This has been brought up on the board a couple of times: The whole beating issue. Was Jamie justified? Was he a monster? Why?

Topic Suggestions or Responses, E-mail Val