Outlander Book Club: Drums of Autumn Chapter 19 breakdown

Outlander Season 4 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ
Outlander Season 4 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/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 Claire catching us up on things that have happened since finding the land. We find out that Jamie wanted to start working on their home right away, with Myers confirming they’d have a couple of months of good weather to make it doable.

It’s a risk, though. If the winter comes early or Jamie doesn’t hunt enough, then they could end up starving.

But Claire is willing to take the risk. She understands that Jamie doesn’t want to go back to Jocasta now. Spending until the spring at River Run would make him feel more obliged to take over the place. He just doesn’t want to do that.

So, they are taking the risk. And that means building shelter as quickly as possible without the right tools. They didn’t come out with all this in mind.

Young Ian has returned from the trip to the Tuscarora, so he is helping with building the shelter. There will be two huts and a cabin, and they quickly get to work on the huts. Claire spends time picking berries and herbs, although it’s not like they’ll keep well through the winter.

Myers and Duncan Innes arrive with some tools and items. Jamie lets Duncan know where his land will be with a bit of farmland. Since Duncan can’t farm, Jamie will use it for corn. Claire notes the emotion from Duncan, who would have never thought he’d get any of this in Scotland.

What it shows is that Jamie hasn’t changed too much in 20 years. Claire noted in the books, I think it was toward the end of Voyager, that Jamie isn’t the same man she knew 20 years ago. His experiences in the cave, at Ardsmuir, and at Helwater have changed him into more of a hardened man. However, there are still parts of the man she knew and loved.

Duncan is overwhelmed with the generosity, but he has earned it. This is the man who has continually followed Jamie no matter what. And he continues to work for Jamie and expected nothing in return. He’s just happy not to be homeless and begging for scraps.

As well as tools, Duncan also brings an iron hearth. It’s a gift from Jocasta, and Claire realizes that this is a sign that Jocasta is giving Jamie her blessing for starting a life himself. She doesn’t begrudge him not staying at River Run like she wanted.

It’s a Scottish custom to bury the iron in the foundation for a good future. That’s what they do for the base of the cabin, and now it’s time to build on top of it.

Finally, Jamie sends Duncan off in search for those who were at Ardsmuir with them. It’s time to build up on the land and get some tenants.