Outlander Book Club: An Echo in the Bone Chapter 49 breakdown

Outlander Season 3 -- Courtesy of Aimee Spinks/STARZ
Outlander Season 3 -- 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

William can be rather obnoxious, and this is one of those times that it comes through. One thing Diana Gabaldon does right is make characters 3D. She gives them flaws, making them as realistic as possible. Yes, even Jamie Fraser has his flaws.

William’s flaw is thinking he knows best. In some cases, what he believes will happen does happen. That’s not always the case, though, and his youth makes it harder for him to act diplomatically when it comes to disagreeing with situations.

Case in point: his dislike for General Burgoyne. William doesn’t like the man because he’s a playwright. He doesn’t think a playwright is serious about military campaigns. He may want to see what soldiers do now!

William also isn’t sure Burgoyne should trust the Natives. He makes it clear that Burgoyne has no control over the local Indians, and for some reason, trusts these Indians to fight on their side. What if they’re lying? They can do that, right? William will have heard all sorts of things about the Native Americans, so it’s not that surprising he doesn’t trust them. Maybe he should have more respect for them.

I do find it funny that William is a little like Jamie was in Drums of Autumn. Wasn’t it Jamie who didn’t really trust the local tribes Ian was hanging out with and learning about?

William makes his dislike for the whole situation known to a fellow soldier Balcarres. William doesn’t like the independence the Indians have, but is this more that he’s a little jealous of their independence? He has some negative things to say because they don’t read the Bible, making it clear that it really does come down to faith.

Balcarres is an interesting officer to talk to. Many of the man’s regiment are Indians, and William notes that Balcarres often dresses like them. However, Balcarres seems not to pay too much attention to the words. William is drunk after all.

William makes a quip about Balcarres being a Scot. Oh, if only William knew. I just love the way William digs a hole for himself without even realizing it. What I really want to know, though, is where William learned a lot of his beliefs. They don’t sound like anything Lord John Grey would have taught him. It doesn’t make a lot of sense.

In the end, the chapter doesn’t really add much to the story. It’s more of making William’s personality and beliefs clear.