A few thoughts about the differences between the OUTLANDER books and TV show
I think as time goes on, it's getting easier for me to separate the books and the show. Think of a map showing two roads that run in more or less the same general direction from Point A to Point B. The two roads intersect in places, they go off in separate directions from time to time, but when viewed from a distance, they're traveling roughly the same route. I think this is a reasonably good analogy for the differences between the books and the show. Some of the details may be different, but the overall direction the story is heading is mostly the same.What do you think?
Season 2 has taken some detours off the main "highway" of the story (more so than Season 1 did), but I think at this point they've mostly found their way back. The Claire we see in Episode 207 is essentially indistinguishable (IMHO) from Book Claire. The Jamie we see in Episode 209, acting as the leader of men he was born to be, is very close to my image of Book Jamie.
Whizzing along the highway of the TV show at high speed, we don't see many of the details that bring the story so vividly to life in the books. (The humor, the lyrical descriptions, the quiet moments with Jamie and Claire just talking, enjoying one another's company. The list goes on and on....) But I believe it is -- still -- essentially the SAME story. <g> Condensed, compressed, occasionally going off on detours that we didn't expect, but it's still recognizably the same story, and the same characters, when viewed from a distance.
Much as we'd all love for the TV show to take us on a long, leisurely drive down that other road, the one that meanders through the Scottish countryside (and the streets of Paris, and the French court at Versailles), moving slowly enough to savor the sights, sounds, and smells of the land we're passing through (and including all of our favorite scenes from the books, either verbatim or as close to the original as possible), the realities of TV production won't permit it.
I can't speak for anyone else here, of course. But for myself, when I "put the books down" (as Diana has said more than once) and try to take the show on its own terms -- and that doesn't AT ALL mean agreeing with every decision they make! -- I find it's much easier to come to terms with the differences.
IMHO they're not irreparably damaging Diana's story or characters with the creative decisions they've made so far, and I don't think they will in future seasons, either. The journey is a bit different, but the overall path they're following is at least heading in the same direction as the books, and I find that reassuring.