Outlander Book Club: Book 2, Chapter 40 breakdown

Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ /
2 of 3
Outlander Season 2 — Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 — Courtesy of STARZ /

Just the Outlander chapter

We start the chapter with Jamie and Claire heading off to meet Lord Lovat. This is Charles’s request, to get more of the Fraser clan involved in the Jacobite cause.

However, it’s clear that Jamie (and Murtagh) have no interest in Simon Fraser. This man is only out for himself and he makes life hard for everyone. If you’re scared of him, it will be even harder to be around him. This is a man who rules with fear.

Claire thinks about the differences between Colum MacKenzie and Simon Fraser in the way they command their clans. Since Colum never had the physical strength, he was able to command through some compassion but also through his smarts. Simon can only use brute force and fear. Sadly, there are still some leaders who think brute force and fear will get them the loyal followers they want, but things don’t work that way.

Along the way, we also learn a little more about Jamie’s family. He admits that his father was illegitimate, which is something he’s ashamed of. Claire doesn’t care about that, but then, that’s because she’s not from that time period. It was shameful, despite the children and grandchildren having no say in the matter.

We also learn that Jamie has managed to get his men away from the Jacobite cause. One by one, they will leave Charles’s army and return home. Sure, they’ll be classed as deserters, but Jamie knows that there will be no concern of retribution about it. Some of them won’t be noticed as missing, and there’s not the army to go after those that are noticed. Jamie just wants to make sure his men are safe.

With this, it does make me question why Claire would ask Roger to research into the men from Lallybroch. She knew what happened to them unless they turn back up for Culloden. Or was it just a way to open the conversation for Brianna to learn the truth about Jamie?

When Claire and Jamie get to Lord Lovat’s home, we immediately meet him. He’s rude, obnoxious, and just downright awful. This is a man who encourages others to treat Claire with disdain, proving that she knows very little Gaelic as a way to embarrass her. He wants to make her feel like an outsider, calling her a sassenach in a derogatory term.

They’re there for a couple of weeks during the chapter, and Claire doesn’t make any friends. She barely sees Jamie, too. He’s trying to convince his grandfather to send men to Charles, but Simon wants Jamie to swear an oath to him. That’s not something Jamie is interested in.

When Simon threatens to allow his men to rape Claire, Jamie uses Simon’s fear against him. He’s a superstitious man. Jamie tells his grandfather that Claire is a white lady. That soon shuts Simon up. This could be useful in the future.