Outlander Book Club: Book 1, Chapter 40 breakdown

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Foreshadowing within the Outlander chapter

There are a few elements that stand out. While I don’t think Diana Gabaldon specifically foreshadowed some of the elements in later books, moments now stand out after years of reading them and watching the TV show.

One of those moments is when Anslem is using the reference of being shipwrecked when describing Claire falling through time. At the end of “Voyager,” Claire and Jamie, among others, are shipwrecked on the coast of Georgia. They need to make a new life for themselves when they make the decision to remain in the colonies.

This could be a hint of this to come. It connects a little to Claire’s journey through the stone. She’s made the decision to stay in the past, just as Claire and Jamie will make the decision to remain in the colonies to start a new life once they’re reunited.

Another element of foreshadowing is certainly in the discussion about Frank and how he could be alive. It’s clear that one of two things could be the case: Black Jack Randall isn’t dead or Black Jack Randall isn’t actually Frank’s ancestor.

Of course, we know that both of those two statements are true. Black Jack Randall wasn’t killed in the stampede at Wentworth Prison. He was just badly injured. That date of death still stands. But that doesn’t mean Frank is Randall’s direct descendant.

It all goes back to Alex, that third son that Frank said was a curate. Well, Frank maybe should have paid more attention to the man.

And this does link to the conversation about making changes to history. It foreshadows that not everything will change.

What if Claire was always meant to travel back in time? What if she was supposed to save the people she did and kill the ones she didn’t? Was she always supposed to attempt to prevent Culloden, then attempt to win Culloden, only for everything to fail?