Today is the second discussion day for the Outlander Read-Along!Â This week’s questions come from Carrie at Stalking the Bookshelves:
1.Â Claire has been given the task of healer at the castle. She must adapt her nursing skills for the time and learn what herbs and etc will cure each particular ailment that is presented to her. Do you have any home remedies that were passed down to you (cure for a cold, bee sting or what have you)?Â
I guess the closest thing to a home remedy I know is that mustard powder in water will induce vomiting. When I was a kid we had this magnet on the fridge that was some kind of freebie we got from who knows where, and it listed all of these poison control measures and what to do if you accidentally ingested certain household toxic chemicals. The mustard one stuck with me for some reason. I must say that I am fascinated by the medicinal properties of common plants, but I don’t have the patience to try and learn them myself.
2. What do you think would be the biggest challenge of living in the past? (Clothing, hygiene, food, etiquette or etc.)
I think language and etiquette would be the most difficult. It’s easy enough to adapt to variances in clothing and bathing, but without the knowledge of social customs that comes from growing up in a region, it can be hard to have the confidence to interact. My fear of unknowingly offending someone or acting out in some weird way can be paralyzing when I travel even today, let alone if I was also dealing with a different time! That’s why I love when Claire curses up a storm and the men react so strongly. Hilarious!
3. Do you have a favorite character, scene or quote so far? If so, share it with us.
It’s probably a tie at this point, between two scenes that I feel have a lot of significance for the future. The first is when Claire catches Jamie and Laoghire in the alcove kissing. That moment has stuck with me from the first time I read the book. There’s something so telling in that scene – Jamie is almost defiantly playing his part as a red-blooded male, and both he and Claire acknowledge that sometimes things happen and you have to go with it. It also tells me that Jamie does, at least, find Laoghire attractive, if not a potential mate, and it also shows Claire that Jamie has the potential to be a lover.
My other favorite scene is when we meet Geillis Duncan. She becomes incredibly important to the series, and it’s really fun going back and reading these initial interactions she has with Claire again. She’s a great character because she is almost immediately untrustworthy, yet Claire seems to like her. It makes it hard to get a full grasp of her. What’s funny is that I, as a reader, tend to skim over descriptions and often base my visualizations of characters based on my own interpretations – and in Geillis’ case, I have always imagined her as dark-haired. So I found it really amusing to re-read it and find out she’s fair-haired!
4. What did you think about the addition of the blood bond in the wedding ceremony? Is this something you would do with the one you love?
I think the swapping blood part is kind of gross, to be perfectly honest. I do really like the words of the oath, however. Primitive, yes, but also beautifully endearing.
5. Are you reading along closely with the scheduled chapters or are you ahead or behind?
I’m sticking to the schedule right now. Though I wonder how many people were able to stop at Chapter 14, since it’s right before the good stuff! That was maybe a bit cruel of us, no? 🙂
If you read along with us this week, be sure to link up your post or share your thoughts in the comments!
To link up your post and get next week’s discussion questions, visit Jess at Tangled Up in Blue.