Posted 1 week ago
September 03 2014
22 notes
Anonymous Asked
hi apriki. i was just wondering something: both outlander and asoif are quite voluminous book series which means that there can be a lot of character development and interesting plots. Which series do you think that does those the best? I know that they have different storylines and are maybe even different genres but do you think that you can compare them in some way? I'm just curious

Hmmm… well, the two series are really different, both stylistically and content-wise. Outlander is - roughly speaking - historical fiction and asoiaf is - roughly speaking - epic fantasy. They’re actually alike in the fact that they’re hard to generalise and attatch to one genre lmao. And, of course, their lengths - honestly I think both series can meander at times and could definitely do with tighter editing.

A really clear difference between the two is that asoiaf is really ambitious with its plot - like, grrm clearly means for his work to reflect and adapt conventions of high fantasy, myth, and conventional storytelling. What he’s going for with his books is an intricately woven story that follows the stories of lots of different characters, but is telling a larger story. Outlander, on the other hand, centres on a smaller group of people and focuses much more on the lives of the characters - its trajectory as a whole follows the lives of Claire and Jamie, and historical/major events are always seen through their eyes and the reader experiences events in the same way the characters do. In that way, I would say asoiaf is has a more compelling plot - the worldbuilding of Westeros and the way that the various arcs and stories are converging together is, imo, one of the biggest draws of the series and it’s definitely more developed and important to the story than it is in Outlander.

For the same reason, the character development in Outlander is honestly out of this world - like, it’s something diana gab actually stumbled into herself, lmao. The same way that asoiaf is building towards that climax of the story and the plot follows that path, Outlander follows the lives of its characters and you get to read about and experiences the minutae of their lives, all the little moments and big events that shape them and make them who they are. There’s a lot of other things going on in the series - subplots, the supernatural/time travel mytharc - but it always comes back to the characters and how they adapt and change. You can read any one of the books and come away having a pretty good idea about who the characters are, which I think is one of Outlander’s biggest strengths. 

So yeah, I think both of the series have strengths that the other doesn’t. I wouldn’t necessarily say that liking one means you’ll enjoy the other, but they’re both really well written and if you’re not daunted by the length, both absolutely worth the effort.