The seventh—but NOT the last!—novel in the OUTLANDER series, An Echo In The Bone, has four main storylines:
- Jamie and Claire Fraser, are now in the midst of the American Revolution;
- Their daughter Brianna, her husband Roger MacKenzie, and their two children, settled at Lallybroch in the 1970′s (finding their feet after their return from the past—but are unaware that that past is just about to leap out at them again);
- Lord John Grey and his step-son William (Jamie’s unacknowledged illegitimate son), are embroiled in the Revolution on the British side with William in the army and Lord John on the clandestine side of intelligence; and
- Jamie’s nephew Young Ian: his troubled love-life is about to take another sharp left turn.
The US cover design for this book shows a caltrop (and not, as one wit suggested to me, a Celtic chicken-foot)—an ancient military weapon, designed to stop oncoming cavalry (and still in equally effective use by the modern Highway Patrol, for stopping cars). A caltrop resembles a child’s jack, but with four tines. No matter which way you throw it, it will always land with three tines down, the fourth one pointing straight up—and every tine ends in a sharp point. You Have Been Warned.
Eschewing such explicitly savage (if accurate) imagery, the UK publisher chose instead to put a skeletal leaf on the cover. I liked this one, too; the leaf being a poetic metaphor for the “echoes” of familial relationships and events that delicately vein the book.