The Outlander

by Gil Adamson | Literature & Fiction |
ISBN: 9780887842108 Global Overview for this book
Registered by Pooker3 of Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on 1/18/2008
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This book is in a Controlled Release! This book is in a Controlled Release!
6 journalers for this copy...
Journal Entry 1 by Pooker3 from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Friday, January 18, 2008
Received with thanks from John Mutford over at The Book Mine Set. I was the lucky winner of one of his quizzes in his The Canadian Book Challenge. Only three days in the post from Iqaluit, Nunavut.

Thanks also to Anansi Press who donated the book!


Journal Entry 2 by Pooker3 from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Wednesday, September 24, 2008
So, I was eying this book this past month trying to decide if I should pick it up. I was feeling as though I'd been neglecting my women for the 2nd Canadian Book Challenge, last month having been devoted to the men. Yet I was reluctant to pick it up because:

1. I was in the middle of *Sacred Games* by Vikram Chandra and was really enjoying it. You know how it is when you look forward to your daily sessions with a particular book. And Sacred Games is almost 1000 pages, so there are lots of sessions;

2. I have Gil Adamson's previous book (short stories), *Help Me Jacques Cousteau*, started but abandoned mid-read (don't know why because I was enjoying it, but obviously something more compelling had come along) and I do feel somewhat bound to read early works before current if I can;

3. And the cover art looks rather like a Mary Poppins suspended in mid-air suggesting a bit of fantasy and I'm not overly keen on fantasy as a rule.

Despite all that though I did pick it up and it instantly took over my reading time. I don't have a lot of that - a few minutes with my coffee in the morning and a few minutes in bed before I turn out the light. I'd like to say that these periods are due to some sort of discipline on my part, but really they're defined by the routine of the household. The morning minutes end when it's my turn in the shower and the evening minutes begin when the evening chores are done and end when I realize I better turn the light off or I'll fall asleep with it on. Usually, I'm fine with that, but with the Outlander I found myself stealing extra minutes, loathe to put the book down. In the morning I kept reading til the other household members got nasty ("Are you going to shower or not!) and in the evening I stole extra time mid-chore (I'll just read a few pages while waiting for the water to boil - never mind that the carrots don't get peeled or the table set and the pot ultimately boils dry.) It was that interesting, that suspenseful that I had to know what happened next. It was so from the opening line, "It was night, and dogs came through the trees, unleashed and howling."

The dogs are chasing Mary Boulton, referred to most of the time as simply, "the widow". She's a nineteen year-old widow who murdered her husband with his own gun. The dogs belong to her two brothers-in-law who are bound to make her pay for her crime. She heads off into the Alberta wilderness with no idea where she's going, just that she has to keep going. And the brothers are in hot pursuit. Will they catch her?

But it is not simply the chase that is so compelling, it is the author's talent in describing the Alberta wilderness with such detail and accuracy that the reader is there. Her characters, and they are characters: a whiskey brewing giant, a boxing pastor, an entrepreneurial dwarf and, a strong silent type romantic interest known as the ridgerunner, all become real and interesting and alive on the page.

Despite the fact that the widow clearly did the crime, the reader can't help but come to like her and want her to evade her pursuers and attain some happiness. For a while it seems she just might do that until the town in which she eventually settles, Frank, Alberta, is devastated by a landslide, even as her pursuers close in.

This was a totally captivating read and I hated to see it end.

This is my ninth book by a Canadian woman and my fourteenth overall for the 2nd Canadian Book Challenge, Eh?

Journal Entry 3 by Pooker3 at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Sunday, November 9, 2008

Released 14 yrs ago (11/10/2008 UTC) at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada



I'll take this one with me to the November meeting of Winnipeg BookCrossers. If no takers, I'll leave it on the shelf.

Journal Entry 4 by wingwinnipegobczwing from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Monday, November 10, 2008
This book is currently sitting on the Winnipeg Official Bookcrossing Zone bookshelf in the loft of The Park Theatre & Movie Café, 698 Osborne Street, Winnipeg MB.

It is waiting there for a new reader to take home, read, and release back into the wild!

Winnipeg bookcrossers meet at my location on the second Tuesday of every month at 7pm to chat about books, swap great reads, and release on the OBCZ shelves. Please join us! We love to see new faces! You will enjoy the comfy atmosphere, the fabulous coffees and teas, and the yummy treats!

Journal Entry 5 by judysh from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Sunday, December 7, 2008
I've had this book on hold at the library, now I can free up that copy for someone else.

Journal Entry 6 by judysh at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Released 13 yrs ago (3/10/2009 UTC) at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada



Not as exciting as the fans make it out to be, but a good Canadian novel.

Journal Entry 7 by gypsysmom from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Wednesday, March 11, 2009
My work book club wants to read this and we were hoping to get the Book Club set from the library but it may be months before we get it. Now that I have a copy I can maybe finish it and lend it to another member and we can discuss it for our April read.

Thanks again Pooker and tikkun-olum.

Journal Entry 8 by gypsysmom from Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Wednesday, April 8, 2009
Well, if I had read this book before the 2009 Canada Reads contest I would have had divided loyalties about which I wanted to win. As it was I had only read The Fat Woman Next Door is Pregnant and The Book of Negroes and there was no contest about which I wanted to win. I thought The Book of Negroes was a fantastic book and I was very happy when it did win the contest. But if I had read The Outlander before I would have been hard pressed to say which I liked better. They both have strong female characters and each faces horrible physical and mental challenges. And since this book is set in a part of Canada that I am very familiar with I have an immediate affinity for it.

Pooker has done a wonderful job (as usual) of describing the book. Let me just say that the structure of the book is such that it is almost impossible to put the book away. The chapter endings, usually, were stray threads that were not part of the main story but connected so that you just wanted to keep on reading to see how they fit into the weave of the main story. And I was so glad that the ending was such that Mary continued to be a strong woman fending for herself.

I'm not sure what to do with this book now. Maybe inspiration will strike me.

Journal Entry 9 by gypsysmom at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada on Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Released 13 yrs ago (4/14/2009 UTC) at Park Theatre & Movie Cafe in Winnipeg, Manitoba Canada



I'll take this to the meet-up tonight where I'm sure someone will want it. This release is for the 2009 Keep Them Moving challenge.

Journal Entry 10 by wingrem_CJL-230711wing on Tuesday, April 14, 2009
Oh, I was pleased to get my hands on this at tonight's meet-up - thanks gypsysmom!

Journal Entry 11 by wingrem_CJL-230711wing on Monday, November 2, 2009
I agree with gypsysmom that Pooker3 has done a great job of describing this book. While the book is not fast paced because it is so beautifully descriptive, it still manages to be an incredibly compelling read. I loved it! And being firmly on the side of law and order, I'm amazed at how strongly I found myself rooting for this young murderess. This is also the third of the 2009 Canada Reads titles I've read (The Fat Woman Next Door is Pregant, The Book of Negroes) and it would definitely get my vote!

Thanks everyone for sharing!

Journal Entry 12 by wingrem_CJL-230711wing at on Monday, November 2, 2009

Released 13 yrs ago (11/2/2009 UTC) at



While reading this, I found myself thinking that Nu-Knees might enjoy this book. And since MrG was flying to the UK today, he kindly agreed to take the book along and send it the rest of the way by Royal Mail. Hope you enjoy this little RABCK surprise, Nu-Knees!

Journal Entry 13 by wingNu-Kneeswing from Knaresborough, North Yorkshire United Kingdom on Saturday, November 14, 2009
Thank you very much, mrsgaskell, for this surprise parcel which the postman brought this morning, and Thank you, mrgaskell, for bringing it across the Atlantic in your luggage! As you know, I'm a bit of a Canadaphile who's read and enjoyed much CanLit in the past, so I look forward to reading this one as well. While I've not yet read all the JEs, it seems to be endorsed by Screen Names I've shared books with in the past and whose judgement I value, which is definitely encouraging :-)
Thank you!

Journal Entry 14 by wingNu-Kneeswing from Knaresborough, North Yorkshire United Kingdom on Friday, November 27, 2009
A strange and strangely compelling tale that had me identifying with the widow, living out in the wilderness, far from anything I understand as life, certainly nothing like the life I live...
Thank you again for sending it mrsgaskell and thank you Pooker3 for releasing it in the first place. If you don't mind, I think I'd like to keep it for a bit while I mull over what I've experienced.
2.12.09: I've changed the status to PC and put it on my Keeper Shelves, probably only temporarily but I may well want to reread it at some point. Thanks again!

Journal Entry 15 by wingNu-Kneeswing at Knaresborough, North Yorkshire United Kingdom on Thursday, October 6, 2011
I was talking about books with a friend last night, not a subject we'd touched on before as she's a fairly new friend. I said how much I loved Canadian Literature, a country in which she'd lived for a while and still has relatives, and she said that she enjoyed books with a strong sense of place. So, I've decided to take this back off my keeper shelves and offer it to her the next time we meet!

Journal Entry 16 by wingNu-Kneeswing at Leeds, West Yorkshire United Kingdom on Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Released 11 yrs ago (10/12/2011 UTC) at Leeds, West Yorkshire United Kingdom


Passed to a dancing friend (S) at Phoenix Folk Dance Club

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