Outlander Book Club: An Echo in the Bone Chapter 16 breakdown

Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ
Outlander Season 2 -- Courtesy of STARZ /
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Outlander Season 3, MacBree-mas, Outlander Book Club
Outlander — Courtesy of STARZ — Acquired via STARZ Media Center /

Just the Outlander chapter

The chapter starts with the MacKenzies in an argument. Brianna is going back to work. She needs to because they’re running low on money. Roger hasn’t got a job yet, and it looks like he isna’t all that motivated to get one. Bree literally tells him that “one of us needs to work, and if it isn’t going to be you, it’ll have to be me.”

I do have to facepalm at the way Bree says this, but I get it. It’s not like she’s work shy, but Roger is annoyed at her getting a job. Bree doesn’t see another option, and maybe she’s a little resentful about that. Plus, if Roger really wants a job, this could be her way to motivating him.

Why would Roger be so bothered by Bree working? It all comes to the time period they’re in. Roger was raised in a time when men supported their families. Bree shouldn’t have to work, and if anyone found out she worked and he was a stay-at-home dad, there would be a lot of talk and sneers. Roger doesn’t want that.

But for Bree, she doesn’t just want to stay at home. She’s been raised to be independent and self-sufficient. Both Claire and Frank helped with that, along with the fact that she was raised in 1960s America. Of course, she’s going to want to work.

I think there’s also a bit of jealousy for Roger. Bree knows what she wants to do, and it’s going to be a little easier for her to explain why she took some time out of the workforce. She had children. Roger doesn’t find it all that easy to explain his disappearance. Plus, they’re in Lallybroch which they bought from Bree’s inheritance. That will lead to a sort of power imbalance between them, and that will play on Roger’s mind.

This chapter really remains about Roger trying to find his place. He used to be happy in education. When he ended up in the past, there was a big question about what he would do with his life, and he seemed to find a calling. However, he wasn’t quite settled with that. Now he doesn’t seem settled with what he used to do. Who Roger thought he was isn’t that person, and this chapter brings that out.