Outlander Book Club: Dragonfly in Amber Chapter 1 breakdown

Outlander -- Courtesy of STARZ -- Acquired via STARZ Media Center
Outlander -- Courtesy of STARZ -- Acquired via STARZ Media Center /
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Outlander — Courtesy of STARZ /

Just the Dragonfly in Amber chapter

We start the chapter with Roger Wakefield. It’s clearly years after the first book, as Roger is now grownup and he’s clearing out the manse. It turns out Reverend Wakefield has passed away, and Roger is doing the task of figuring out what to do with things.

There are instantly a few connections to the first book, mainly the amount of history books that the reverend has. We learn that Roger is an historian and a history professor at Oxford. He’s taking some time off to deal with the passing of his adoptive father. However, the Jacobite period isn’t one of his specialities and he’s not interested in keeping the books, so he should donate them.

He also thinks about the garage and his parents’ boxes. There are items still left from decades of grief, and Roger isn’t looking forward to dealing with them.

He’s saved by the bell. Claire and Brianna arrive, with Claire offering her condolences. Claire immediately knows who Roger is, but it takes him a little longer to remember Claire. He was only a boy the last time he saw her.

It’s clear that Claire hasn’t kept in touch with the reverend, but Frank did. More on that in the foreshadowing section.

Claire has a favor to ask of Roger. She would like him to go through a list of names to see if they died at Culloden or if any survived. She also has a list of their wives’ names, which could help with the research. All names are from Broch Turach, but it’s not clear if Jamie is one of the names on the list.

Of course, right now, we have no idea what’s going on in the story. In the first Outlander book, we left Claire and Jamie in 1744 with their life somewhere in Europe ahead of them. Now we’re 20 years after the start of the first book in Scotland. Claire is back in her own time with Brianna, but how? That’s all to come!

There was one question I had with timing, though. Claire says that she and Bree are going to Loch Ness and that the last time she’d been was 23 years ago. That would make it 1968. Yet at the same time, she tells Brianna that she’s also interested in finding a friend from the past, but thinks this friend will have changed her name.

That friend is Geillis. But Dougal said the year 1967. Why would Claire be looking for Geillis in 1968? It’s something I’m only just thinking about now since it’s not that long ago since I read the first book.

Anyway, this opening chapter gives us Roger’s feelings for Brianna and tells us that Claire is on a research trip. She also notes how similar Brianna is to Jamie.