Since 1992, Diana Gabaldon's Outlander series has been building the unlikely romance of Jamie, an 18th-century Scot, and Claire, a World War II-era British nurse. Those who haven't yet read the time-traveling romance will want to start the first volume, Outlander, now, as the Starz adaptation premieres this summer. For those caught up with the books, we have some suggestions to tide you over until the series airs--or until we can get our hands on the next Outlander volume, Written in My Own Heart's Blood, due June 10.
For more Scottish history: Like Outlander, Susanna Kearsley's The Winter Sea mixes two time periods, early 18th century and present day. Writer Carrie McClelland has moved from France to Scotland to write a novel about a 1708 Jacobite invasion of French and Scottish soldiers attempting to restore the exiled James Stuart to his crown. But as she writes, she finds her ties to her Scottish ancestry stronger than ever before--stronger even than one might think possible. The resulting story is part romance, part mystery, all steeped in historical detail.
For more time travel: Some of the questions raised in the Outlander series explore time travel's implications for changing the course of history and how it affects the people involved. Audrey Niffenegger's The Time Traveler's Wife explores the same questions, but through a very different lens, as Henry DeTamble involuntarily travels back through the timeline of his wife, Clare Abshire, first meeting her in her childhood and embroiling them both in a romance neither can escape--or control.
For more historical romance: For those looking for romance, Sarah MacLean's Rules for Scoundrels series is a good place to start. The first, A Rogue by Any Other Name, presents a disgraced Marquess who attempts to marry his way back into the good graces of society by wedding a proper Lady--until he finds out she bring her own sense of sin to the marriage. Witty and seductive, and more books to follow... what's not to love? --Kerry McHugh, blogger at Entomology of a Bookworm