Outlander Book Club: Drums of Autumn Chapter 10 breakdown

Outlander Season 4 -- Courtesy of Mark Mainz/STARZ
Outlander Season 4 -- Courtesy of Mark Mainz/STARZ /
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Outlander Season 4 — Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ
Outlander Season 4 — Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ /

Just the Outlander chapter

The chapter starts with the Frasers still on the Sally Ann. We get a brief description of where River Run is located, but the focus moves onto what Jamie will tell Jocasta about Bonnet. Jamie is going to be honest about it.

And he is. As soon as they meet, Jamie tells Jocasta the truth. She’s shocked to hear, and Jamie admits that it was partly his fault. He knew Bonnet was a bad man but helped him escape. Jocasta doesn’t blame Jamie. We see this kindness to her as she welcomes everyone, including Fergus.

Considering she’s a MacKenzie, I was always surprised by her personality at this point. When I first thought of Jocasta’s personality, I think I thought of her more like Dougal than Colum. In the end, we find out she’s very much like her eldest brother.

We get to meet Ulysses, although he doesn’t speak much. He’s just there for Jocasta, and Claire later realizes that Jocasta is blind. She tries to figure out how Jocasta lost her sight, coming to the conclusion that glaucoma is the most likely but there are other reasons.

And within this part of the chapter, we get the hilariousness of the skunk “attack.” Rollo, Jamie, and Young Ian all overreact about the “dangers” of a skunk. When Young Ian and Rollo go after it, they realize just why they should stay away. It means a tomato bath before dinner. Oh, how I always chuckle at this part of the book.

Despite her blindness, Jocasta still goes around the grounds. In Drums of Autumn Chapter 10, it means a trip out to oversee things where the turpentine is. There is the Royal Navy there arranging for a contract, and we find out that this is how River Run makes some of its money.

There is a small explosion, but Jamie manages to get things under control. These explosions seem relatively common, including one of the slaves having part of his face blown off. This one doesn’t lead to any casualties though, and in the end, the quarterly contract is signed.

When they all get back to the plantation, Jamie calls Jocasta and Farquard Campbell out on their deception. He was taken there for something more than just seeing the area. It turns out that the lieutenant in the Navy wanted Jocasta to marry him. Of course, this is to get his hands on her money and the plantation, and Jocasta said no.

Yet Jocasta knows she’s in a dangerous predicament on the account of being a woman and also being blind. She needs a man to help run things, and she decides to make a show that Jamie is going to take over things.

She didn’t initially tell Jamie that not knowing what type of man he would be. Would he be willing to deceive the British Navy? Of course, we all know Jamie and we all know he would do anything to keep lands in the family.

It’s clear that it’s time to get to business.

Before that, a package arrives. Jenny and Ian have written to Jamie and sent it to Jocasta. They figure that he might eventually go to visit her. Jamie reads Ian’s letter in the chapter, which tells them of Young Simon Fraser becoming a military man. He has his own group of soldiers and he likes war.

Ian asks for Jamie to keep Young Ian in the colonies. It’s probably going to be safer. Ian knows that his youngest son doesn’t have a head for schooling or business, so Young Ian would probably become a soldier, and Ian doesn’t want that to happen. If it’s either a soldier or in danger with Jamie, Ian and Jenny would rather Young Ian stays with Jamie.

I love that we get this letter. Ian is very honest about his son, and sometimes, as parents, we need to be. At the same time, he is just looking out for his son. It sets the plot to keep Young Ian in the colonies.