Gil Adamson’s The Outlander focuses on “the widow,” a nineteenth-century woman we quickly learn who has killed her husband and, as the novel opens, is on the run from his two brothers.
The widow herself is unremarkable. The plot, likewise, leaves something to be desired. The widow encounters a series of figures who help/hinder (but mostly help) her escape in the fashion of a children’s book where a lost lamb tries to find its mother and must first meet a duck, horse, pig and cow before at last finding its true mum. So follows the plot of The Outlander. That said, by the time the novel gets to the “cow” in the series of chance encounters, I found myself rooting for the widow’s escape and invested in her finding something of a happy ending. Not overly invested, mind you, but interested, which is more than I expected throughout the first half of the book where (I confess) I only kept reading because I suspected the novel might be of some use to my thesis (it will not be).