Tag Archives: diana gabaldon

The Ultimate Literary Hero

When people, and I mean mainly women here, think of a literary hero images that spring to mind are of a tall, dark and handsome chap with a brooding air, think Mr Darcy, Heathcliff.

What people don’t imagine is a 6-foot, red-headed, 18th century Scot.

Believe me though, I defy anyone not to fall in love with a certain James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser, Laird of Lallybroch and the erstwhile hero of Diana Gabaldon’s series of books about him and his life with Claire Beauchamp a nurse who stumbles across a time portal on honeymoon in Scotland in 1945 and finds herself back in 18th century Scotland.

Sounds incredulous, and far too dull a book I hear you cry.

When I go to a bookshop (far too few around these days, (curses to Amazon) and I used to love spending hours in them) I don’t choose a book because it’s in the top ten, or it’s a classic. I choose purely on what the cover looks like and what I read on the back. It doesn’t always work, I’ve certainly read some that I will not be reading again (The Island and Life of Pi spring to mind). For the life of me, I can’t remember why I picked up Cross Stitch, but from what I read on the back it must have sounded quite a good read. And boy, this time I wasn’t wrong!

Cross Stitch (Outlander in the US) is the first book in the series by Diana Gabaldon and from the moment I picked it up, I couldn’t put it down. I was almost feeding a habit, I wanted to know what happened, when Jamie (we’re on first name terms don’t you know) gets all macho and heroic you feel like swooning and thinking “why can’t I find someone who’d protect me like that?” And, more importantly, I cared about the characters.

At the time I discovered Jamie, I was working in London and would read waiting for the train, on the train and sometimes, if I got to a really good bit on my way to the office or car, depending on which part of the day it was.

So what is it about the Laird of Lallybroch?

He’s not the archetypal tall, dark and handsome hero of classic literature.

He’s a rough, tough macho man, without the ego, who would do anything to protect those he loved, with the most gentle, caring side to his personality. Traits I feel are all too lacking in this day and age. In today’s world I’d guess you’d say he’s in touch with his feminine side, but not too much as to overshadow the he-man

Top 5 Jamie qualities:

  1. Not afraid to say how he feels
  2. Will fight for honour and justice
  3. There’s no side to him and no ego – what you see is what you get – how very refreshing!
  4. He’s gentle and loving
  5. He’s very sexy!!

Oh, if only there was someone out there like that, 6 foot plus and a red-head to boot…

He’s everything a woman could want from a man – if you don’t believe me, read the books. He’s a well-kept secret!! Although, when I was first reading the books I mentioned to a friend about them, and she already loved them, then my mum told my aunt who said that my cousin loved them (to the extent her children are named after characters in the book!)

So, it isn’t just me. Women all over the world are falling in love with Jamie Fraser!

That’s right, we’re all in love with someone we can’t have because the only place he exists is in our imaginations. I guess that’s the power of books!

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My Top 5 Men

OK, got some time of my hands, going to indulge in a little drool time now 🙂

My top 5 men. Ooo, such a list to choose from – and believe me, not going to be obvious and say Brad Pitt, George Clooney, or even Robert Pat-whatever-his-name-is. Oh no, I have a very eclectic taste, which mirrors my quirkiness 😉

Literally, anything goes in my case 😉

Those that didn’t quite make it on to the top 5, but deserve an honourable mention: Gregory Peck, Rock Hudson, Raffy Sinclair (hero from chick-lit “Chocolate Wishes” by Trisha Ashley), Ralph Fiennes, Andrew Ridgely (don’t ask, big Wham! fan when I was little), ooo and the sax player from Jesus Jones – he was rather lovely when I saw them at the student union, whilst at uni, mmm, glazed with perspiration, a ponytail of blond dreads and the most gorgeous blue eyes you could dive in to (seriously, blond dreads don’t do it for me now, but the memory is lovely)

But anyway, back to the list:

In at number 5 – the lovely Mr Darcy from Pride & Prejudice. And yes, it does help to think of Colin Firth emerging from that lake with a dripping shirt. Stop! I’m coming over all unnecessary as I type 😉 Tall, dark, brooding – and as Mrs Bennett quite rightly remarks “a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife”. He’s definitely good to drool over, but I think the conversation would get a little stilted if he didn’t actually speak and just brooded all the time.

At number 4 – Christian Horner – don’t ask me why! I have the teensiest little crushette on the Team Principal for Red Bull Racing – which is odd as I’m a firm Team McLaren girl (Go Lewis!). He’s way too short for me (and clearly wouldn’t give me a second, or even backward glance), but there’s something about him. Maybe it’s the cute floppy, college boy hair? Certainly brightens up race weekend – especially if McLaren have messed up the pit stops, or strategy … again!

 

 

Number 3 – another literary creation. A certain James Alexander Malcolm McKenzie Fraser. The hero of a series of books by Diana Gabaldon. Won’t bore you with the story details, needless to say I dare any woman not to fall in love with this 6ft, red-headed Scottish Laird. He’s brave, handsome (in my imagination anyway), romantic, not ashamed to say how he feels and would do anything for the woman he loves. SWOON! (Someone please pass me my smelling salts)

 

Number 2 – Close call for this, but at number 2 is Bruce Parry. For those of you who’ve never heard of him, he’s an ex-marine who spends months at a time living with indigenous tribes people all over the world. Again, a bit on the short side, but a definite wouldn’t say no! Environmentallist, eco-warrior, and definitely has that little something about him that endears the female eye to start drooling 😉

 

But at number 1 – and don’t laugh, because I fell in love with him when I was 10. Dirk Bogarde. Don’t care that’s he’s no longer with us, don’t care what people say about him. I fell in love with Dr Simon Sparrow when I was 10. One of my favourite old-time films – Doctor in the House. Inspired me to want to be a doctor – that and wanting to find a cure for my mum’s arthritis. Didn’t become a doctor I hasten to add – got despondent at school. Still that obviously wasn’t the right career path for me, and I wouldn’t change a thing. Still love Dirk Bogarde though. A true matinée idol 😉

Who would you have on your list?

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