am 3. September 2003
Die englische Originalfassung von "Die geliehene Zeit", dem zweiten Band der Highland-Saga von Diana Gabaldon,lässt durch die Muttersprache gerade die Schauplätze der Geschichte sehr lebendig wirken. Ebenso wie in der deutschen Übersetzung sind es die detaillierten Beschreibungen von Gabaldon, die den Leser förmlich in die Handlung ziehen. Gefühle und Stimmungen werden so genau beschrieben wie historische Fakten. Zusammen mit dem Sprachwitz, den die Muttersprache der Schriftstellerin nach sich zieht, ist die englische Ausgabe sehr empfehlenswert. Der Schreibstil der Autorin, den ich als nicht so schwierig einstufen würde, erlaubt sich an diese Fassung heranzuwagen, auch wenn man kein englischer Muttersprachler ist.
am 19. Februar 2016
I fell in love with Outlander some time ago and, as some people pointed out, I wish Ms. Gabaldon had left it at that. The first part of the book is still exciting, you feel the fast pace of the first one. But then you start waiting and waiting for something really interesting to happen. The magic of the relationship between Claire and Jamie is gone, what is left is a series of trivial events. In France, back to Scotland, where you (again) await patiently the end of all the ups and downs of the couple.
By the way, I wasn't expecting a historical based on absolutely accurate facts, but some things are just annoying because you don't have to be familiar with history to know that Orvieto, for example, is a city in Italy (and no port, in fact) and that it could never be the port where Jamie was supposed to board the ship with the wine cargo from Porto. Maybe Ms.Gabaldon meant Oviedo, but then again it would be Gijón, probably.
Don't read the book, keep dreaming of Outlander.
am 4. September 2015
Most of the reviews I read about this book–before starting it–said it was the least favourite of the series. I have to say I agree, though I have not made it through the series yet of course, I thought this one was a little long-ish and had SO much going on that it was a little hard to follow.
It seems like the second installment of a series is always the most slow and boring, I have felt that with almost every series I have read and this is no different. It’s almost like the author doesn’t know where or how to begin explaining things until about Book III or toward the end of Book II. In Book II of the Outlander series, I felt like there was A LOT of Scottish history and political background in the novel. It was hard to keep everything straight and keep all the historic figures, period, and politics in order.
There were a lot of stories and sub plots happening and personally, I am not a Highlands scholar/historian/enthusiast by ANY means so I struggled to keep up with what was going on. I just really wanted to know what was going on with the main characters and didn’t care for all the sub plotting and history lessons though I know it was necessary to enrich the story and series.
Without the historic background though there was really no other way of explaining how or why Claire went back to her time at the end and clearly Gabaldon knows not EVERYONE is as into Scottish history as herself so she thought it necessary to give us all some background–which was helpful but still frustrating.
I literally felt like SO much happened in the story by the end that I felt like I just read two books! It was long and detailed and FULL of action, history, romance, genealogy/ancestry, and tons of character developing sub plots/stories. Besides this though, I was bothered by a couple of other things as well.
I was really bugged by Claire’s betrayal of Jamie by having sex with the King. I know–it wasn’t like she had a whole lot of other options and yes Jamie didn’t hold it against her and no she didn’t enjoy it but still I felt like it was all wrong for her character in some ways. The circumstance fit and all with the time period etc and wasn’t totally off base for Claire but for me I just felt like that was SO wrong on her part to give up the only thing her and Jamie still had after the loss of the baby–trust.
When they do talk about it, Claire admits she was upset with Jamie and felt like he broke the trust first by dueling with Randall and Jamie forgives her as he knows she had no choice but still….to me it was the ultimate betrayal. I felt like her having sex with the King will somehow always be something there in the back of both their minds….never able to fully trust or forgive each other in some ways.
The other thing that bothered me was how Gabaldon tried to redeem Randall in some way. For me, what Randall did, not just to Jamie but to others as well, was entirely unforgivable. Gabaldon does try and show that he has feelings and to some degree isn’t ALL bad when he enlists Claire’s help to nurse his brother–even Claire admits in spite of everything, Randall is a ‘gentleman’. He keeps his word to Claire and tries to help her and Jamie by leaking military information to them and then saves his brother’s lovers reputation by marrying her. Claire realizes/acknowledges (though she doesn’t ever really admit it openly) that Randall is somewhat like Frank. Certainly he looks like Frank but she always said his mannerisms were NOT Frank–but once she decides to help him, she sees in some ways he is like Frank….honorable as his word if nothing else.
What the mind sees it believes. When Claire sees Randall, he looks like Frank but doesn’t act like Frank…..but from time to time he does something that reminds her of Frank and because they look alike she struggles to separate dream from reality. It would be easier to hate Randall if he didn’t look so much like a man she once loved.
As was the case in Book I one thing that I liked most about Book II was the richness of its characters. Book I has a lot of philosophical insight that the characters and language highlighted throughout the story and this was no different. For example one of my favourite scenes in Book II was when Claire meets the Fraser clan ‘seer’ (Maisri) in an chapel while visiting Jamie’s family. Claire and Maisri talk about the ‘curse’ of knowing the future and whether or not Maisri should tell Lord Lovat (Jamie’s grandfather) his future/fate:
‘Did ye ever think perhaps that it’s no your own fate at all that makes you what ye are? That maybe ye have the Sight or the power only because it’s necessary to someone else, and it’s nothing to do wi’ you at all– except that it’s you who has it and has to suffer the having of it’ …Doom or save. That I cannot do. For I have no power beyond that of knowledge, no ability to bend others to my will, no way to stop them doing what they will. There is only me.
Another one of my favourite passages from the book is in the final chapters when Roger Wakefield and Claire are discussing Claire’s ‘history’ and ‘past’….musing over something one of her 1700’s friends once told her about life and one’s essence:
‘…it’s only the essence of a thing that counts. Then time strips everything else away, it’s only the hardness of the bone that’s left’
One of the things I like best about literature are the books that make you think and make you ponder things you wouldn’t normally think of or ponder. Like this for example…what would you do if you could change history or the future? What if we COULD time travel? What then? I think the language and the philosophical musings in this series do a lot to encourage this kind of personal meditation and reflection which for me stretches the imagination increasing the pleasure one gets from reading.
There is also a fair amount of romantic, lyrical passages/poems/quotes in the book aside from the imaginative reflections. One of my favs comes from a poem given to Claire by one of Jamie’s dearest friends on their wedding day….a love poem– in Gaelic which Gabaldon translates for the reader thankfully–Jamie had the Gaelic quote inscribed on the inside of Claire’s wedding ring:
‘…da mi basia mille…’ Then let amorous kisses dwell on our lips begin and tell a thousand and a hundred score a hundred and a thousand more’
The inscription ‘da mi basia mille’ means ‘a hundred and a thousand more’.
Now that I am done with Book II, I absolutely MUST continue on with the series…though they are long (each book is about 800-900 pages) but I simply cannot move on to something else until I know what happens next.
am 17. Juli 2000
In this, the second book in the wonderful time-travel adventure begun in _Outlander_, we are once again pulled into the life and love of Jamie and Claire Fraser -- and what an intoxicating, exhilarating, adventurous, passionate, provocative place it is! Immediately, you are absorbed in this epic story and once again Ms. Gabaldon sets you on the path of a legendary love. You certainly need to have read _Outlander_ to have a full appreciation of the story as we are swept twenty years into the future. The characters are true to form and come to life in the same way as they did in the previous novel. Claire is once again the self-sufficient, sarcastic and brave heroine and Jamie is, as always, the loyal, strong and proud hero. Some authors tend to sway from their original characters when writing a sequel, but Ms. Gabaldon is certainly not one of those writers. She stays true to her characters and the reader once again sees them as real people. The characters are placed on a variety of backdrops from the Scottish Highlands to the intrigue-ridden French court and as always Ms. Gabaldon brings these settings to vivid life and transports the reader into the landscape. Once again there is plenty of history and political intrigue but Ms. Gabaldon handles these so well that the reader is blissfully unaware that they're learning anything -- instead, they are caught up in the action and history comes to life. _Outlander_ readers will be glad to see some familiar faces in the secondary characters and will be sad at the loss of some we've grown to love or contented at the loss of some we've grown to hate. One thing about this story that I absolutely loved was meeting Jamie and Claire's daughter Brianna. She is such a mixture of Jamie and Claire that from the moment you meet her you feel as though you know her. I'm quite interested to see where the quasi-romance between Brianna and Roger Wakefield (you'll remember him as the precocious adopted son of the Reverend Wakefield from _Outlander_!) ends up. As always, Ms. Gabaldon took me on a roller-coaster ride for the emotions -- from laughing to crying -- I enjoyed every single minute of it. And, speaking of crying, please, please have Kleenex near at hand. I've never, in all my reading life, cried so much while reading a book. Even as I write this review, I ask myself: How can I possibly put into words how wonderful this book is? And the answer is: I can't. _Drangonfly in Amber_ (just as _Outlander_ before it) is something you have to experience firsthand. There are no words to convey the depth of feeling that is included in the pages of this book. I firmly believe that Diana Gabaldon has cemented her place in literary history. She continually sets forth novels that steal the heart and astound the mind. Don't forget to continue the saga with _Voyager_ and then _Drums of Autumn_ and when you've finished with those, be prepared to wait in a form of happiness/agony like the rest of us for the continuation and completion of the tale.
am 16. April 1998
I don't normally read "romance books", and while speaking with a friend about this book she pointed out that this books isn't a romance. I believe it is much more of an adventure story. I was working at a bookstore a few years ago and people were constatnly buying Outlander. I finally asked someone buying Dragonfly in Amber about it. She replied my telling me that I had to read this book. I decided what theheck? When I got to the part about time travel I thought about putting the book down and I am glad that I didn't. I have never felt so close to a character as Jamie. The author seems to describe every aspect about him and you are always learning more. Claire is a very real person in that she has flaws but she is also very likable. I enjoyed the section of the book that dealt with Paris. I found myself wanting to learn more about this period. Its hard to separate fact from fiction. I have to admit that sometimes the love scenes make me blush but they are so fun! I was very surprised by the twists at the very end of the book which made me order Voyager that very day. I honestly felt that I was there from the descriptions in the book. You can picture everything the smells, sights, noises. I highly recommend this book as well as the first book
am 28. Juli 2014
I really love these books! I read the first one in German and already liked it. The book takes you into a completely different time and makes you dream away from reality for a few hours.
Although it is not all time fraught with tension, it will make you keep on reading.
I really love it!
am 3. April 2001
Dies ist der zweite Band in der Serie. Der Held, Jamie, ist sehr menschlich, ganz hart und ganz weich. Ich fand die menschlichen Situationen packend und amusant. Wenn Sie gut genug Englisch verstehen, ist es auf jeden Fall wert, das Buch in der Originalsprache zu lesen, vor allem fur die Dialogszenen.
am 16. März 1999
I started this series with Dragonfly In Amber, although it is the 2nd book of the series. I was at a library skimming through and i happened to open up the cover (of the paperback) and saw an artist's depiction of Jamie. WELL, I just had to read the book because Jamie (the drawing)looked so handsome. Anyways, I read the book, and could not believe how AWESOME it was, I actually had a dream about the characters (no lie) because Ms. Gabaldon made it so real . Needless to say, I bought Outlander the next day, and read the entire series back to back. This is the book that started me off though, and I have never felt so strongly attached or so emotional about Jamie and Claire (I can't tell you how many times I burst out laughing or bawled like a baby). It makes me feel like I have a special bond with them somehow, like no one else can intrude in our world. I am a hopeless romantic and have read countless novels, but I am happy to say that Jamie and Claire's stories are the only ones falling apart (from being re-re-re-read of course) BUY THIS BOOK & THE WHOLE SERIES....YOU WILL LOVE IT =)
am 4. Februar 1999
I'm not an avid reader, but I have read 3000 pages of the Claire and Jamie saga in the last thirty days. I have been completely swept away by their lives and loves. The detail with which DG writes transports you to the exact time and place she is describing. I have no desire now but to continue being a part of their lives. I can't wait until the next installment.
I have never cried so hard at a book in my life as I did when Jamie and Claire part at the end of DragonFly in Amber. It was heart wrenching. Anyone who needs a good cry need only reread the last twenty pages.
Tell everyone you know: this is an amazing series!
am 29. April 2016
Nachdem ich "Outlander" fertig gelesen hatte, konnte ich es gar nicht erwarten, mit Band zwei, "Dragonfly in Amber" anzufangen. Obwohl es im ersten Band ein paar Dinge gab, die ich ziemlich problematisch fand, hat es mir Alles in Allem doch einfach nur richtig Spaß gemacht - es war spannend und unterhaltsam und genau das habe ich von Band zwei der Reihe auch erwartet. Leider wurden meine Hoffnungen in dieser Hinsicht aber nicht wirklich erfüllt.
Kommen wir erstmal zum Positiven: Genau wie ich gehofft, aber um ehrlich zu sein nicht richtig erwartet habe, ist die Beziehung von Jamie und Claire in "Dragonfly in Amber" wirklich deutlich weniger problematisch als in "Outlander". Es gibt weder Misshandlungen noch irgendwas, was einen im Bezug auf das Sexleben der Beiden auch nur im Entferntesten an eine Vergewaltigung oder mangelnden Konsens denken lassen würde. Ich war richtig glücklich, dass Jamie sich die Dinge, die Claire ihm im ersten Band gesagt hat, wohl doch zu Herzen genommen hat. Vielleicht lag es auch an dem, was ihm selbst am Ende von "Outlander" geschehen ist - wie auch immer, jedenfalls war ich wirklich froh, die Beziehung der Beiden wieder gutheißen zu können.
Leider gab es aber eben auch viele Dinge, die mir an "Dragonfly in Amber" gar nicht gefallen haben. Zum Einen finde ich den krassen Schnitt zwischen dem ersten und dem zweiten Band einfach nur dämlich und unnötig, wäre das nicht gewesen hätte mir das Buch bestimmt deutlich mehr Spaß gemacht. So musste ich mich aber erst einmal durch etwa hundert Seiten der 1968-Handlung quälen, in denen ich mir sicher zwanzig Mal ernsthaft überlegt habe, das Buch einfach abzubrechen, weil mir alles so unheimlich auf die Nerven ging. Brianna und Roger sind zwei der unsympathischsten und anstrengendsten Figuren, die mir seit langem in einem Buch begegnet sind, und nicht einmal meine heißgeliebte Claire konnte ich noch leiden, denn sie hat wohl aus irgendeinem Grund ihre komplette Persönlichkeit im 18. Jahrhundert zurückgelassen und ist jetzt nur noch anstrengend und langweilig. Auch die Handlung dieses Teils des Buches war einfach nur langweilig, nichtssagend und überflüssig. Ich kann wirklich nicht verstehen, was das Ganze sollte. Mit so einer Art von Bruch kann man sicher einiges an Spannung erzeugen, wenn man es richtig macht, aber meiner Meinung nach ist das hier absolut nicht gelungen.
Hätte Diana Gabaldon einfach sofort wieder in der 1744-Handlung eingesetzt und ihren Lesern diesen Quatsch erspart wäre das ganze Buch einfach um Klassen besser gewesen. Sobald wir nämlich wieder im 18. Jahrhundert waren hat "Dragonfly in Amber" mir mit einem Schlag viel, viel besser gefallen - Claire ist wieder die wunderbare Claire, die wir kennen, und Diana Gabaldon hat plötzlich auch ihre Fähigkeit, gute und überzeugende Charaktere zu schreiben, wieder entdeckt. Zwar mochte ich auch hier natürlich nicht Jeden, aber im Gegensatz zu Roger und Brianna waren die Nebencharaktere hier zumindest wieder komplette, dreidimensionale, lebensechte Figuren.
Die Handlung war allerdings auch hier deutlich weniger spannend als noch in "Outlander". Wo der erste Band mit schnell aufeinander folgenden Ereignissen und zahlreichen plötzlichen Wendungen auszeichnet, da hat "Dragonfly in Amber" nur noch langatmige Intrigen und vor allem massenhaft Klatsch und Tratsch über irgendwelche Nebencharaktere.
Zudem gibt es wahnsinnig viel anstrengendes Liebes-Gedöns zwischen Claire und Jamie. Dass es in einem Liebesroman auch mal kitschig oder melodramatisch zugehen kann ist ja ganz klar, aber hier stolpern die Beiden gefühlt im Minutentakt von lauten, leidenschaftlichen Streits - für gewöhnlich übrigens über Nichts, was das Ganze nicht weniger anstrengend macht - die Jamie gerne mit Aussagen wie "Töte mich doch einfach!" beendet, zu wahnsinnig wortreichen, sich manchmal etwas wiederholenden Liebeserklärungen, zurück zu furchtbaren Streits über Nichts, und dann zu erneuten Bekundungen, dass man wirklich und ohne Zweifel füreinander geschaffen ist, sich immer lieben wird, und so weiter und so fort. Ich schätze, wer neben "Outlander" auch gerne schmalzige Liebesromane liest, der kommt hier voll auf seine Kosten, wer die Bücher aber eher für die Spannung und die Abenteuer in den schottischen Highlands schätzt, für den dürfte das Ganze etwas anstrengend werden. In der zweiten Hälfte des Buches wurde es wieder besser, aber ingesamt konnte mich die Handlung des zweiten Bandes der "Outlander"-Reihe wirklich nicht vom Hocker reißen.
Alles in Allem war "Dragonfly in Amber" also leider eher enttäuschend, vor allem wenn man bedenkt, wie unheimlich gerne ich "Outlander" gelesen habe. Trotzdem bin ich ganz froh, das Buch nicht schon auf den ersten hundert Seiten abgebrochen zu haben, denn es wurde in der 1744-Handlung wirklich wieder deutlich besser und ich habe die Hoffnung noch nicht aufgegeben, dass Diana Gabaldon im nächsten Band, "Voyager" doch nochmal richtig die Kurve kriegt. Ich will die Reihe deshalb auf jeden Fall noch weiterlesen, auch wenn "Dragonfly in Amber" stellenweise wirklich mehr Qual als Spaß für mich war.