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Author releases companion to 'Outlander' series
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Author releases companion to 'Outlander' series

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HICKORY — Mary Ellen Snodgrass, a western North Carolina reference book author, recently announced the publication of her companion to the popular television series, "Outlander."

McFarland, a Jefferson, North Carolina based independent publisher of academic nonfiction, published Snodgrass’s "Television’s OUTLANDER: A Companion, Seasons 1-5" in May, according to a news release.

The 299-page paperback, “clarifies how the Scots backed democracy and helped drive out the British from the [American] colonies,” said Snodgrass. “They clashed with them once and lost, but they’re willing to do it again. They are committed to be settlers and new citizens — as firm Americans as they were Scots.”

Helping "Outlander" viewers understand the true history of Scottish arrival in the American colonies and the Scots subsequent participation in the American Revolution is one of 125 topics Snodgrass explores and explains, separating fact from fiction, in her companion to the classic historical fiction for television adapted from American author Diana Gabaldon’s "Outlander" series of novels.

“In 'Outlander,' I listed the ways that people died and the herbs that Claire uses to treat the sick and injured," said Snodgrass. "I did the same with weapons, which alter significantly from season one to season five. I tried to follow the creation of the kilt and its value as a heritage garment for men. Integral to the theme of commitment to wedlock, I surveyed the many types of couples and their successes at building a lasting union.”

While "Outlander" builds on the romance of veteran World War II British military nurse Claire Beauchamp Randall and her WWII-era husband Frank Randall, followed by her second husband, 18th-century Scotsman Jamie Fraser, the series is further fueled by dramatic energy created through adventure, history and time travel.

Having taught high school English for two decades, Snodgrass focuses on writing textbooks and reference works because she possesses, as she described it, “a teacherly bent for organizing facts into useful, significant patterns.”

Some of Snodgrass’s recently published companion pieces are works about ecologist Rachel Carson, North Carolina novelist Lee Smith, Young Adult author Gary Paulsen, and Irish playwright Brian Friel.

Coming out in July is a companion about author Edwidge Danticat, a major Haitian feminist. In the works is "Asian Women's Arts," which follows the success of female silk weavers from 2700 B.C.E. to the present. Topics include hymnography, epic, sculpture, prison diary, journalism, letter writing, anime, urban wall art, puppetry, embroidery, and fiber work.

"Television’s Outlander: A Companion, Seasons 1-5" is now available for purchase on Amazon.

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