Title: Only Time Will Tell
Author: Jeffrey Archer
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Publish Date: August 30, 2011
What's the Story?:
From Goodreads.com: "The epic tale of Harry
Clifton’s life begins in 1920, with the words “I was told that my father
was killed in the war.” A dock worker in Bristol, Harry never knew his
father, but he learns about life on the docks from his uncle, who
expects Harry to join him at the shipyard once he’s left school. But
then an unexpected gift wins him a scholarship to an exclusive boys’
school, and his life will never be the same again.
As he enters into
adulthood, Harry finally learns how his father really died, but the
awful truth only leads him to question, was he even his father? Is he
the son of Arthur Clifton, a stevedore who spent his whole life on the
docks, or the firstborn son of a scion of West Country society, whose
family owns a shipping line?
This introductory novel in Archer’s
ambitious series The Clifton Chronicles includes a cast of colorful
characters and takes us from the ravages of the Great War to the
outbreak of the Second World War, when Harry must decide whether to take
up a place at Oxford or join the navy and go to war with Hitler’s
Germany. From the docks of working-class England to the bustling streets
of 1940 New York City, Only Time Will Tell takes readers on a
journey through to future volumes, which will bring to life one hundred
years of recent history to reveal a family story that neither the reader
nor Harry Clifton himself could ever have imagined."
My Two Cents:
"Only Time Will Tell," Harry Clifton believes that he will end up
working at the docks like his father, whom he never met, and his uncle.
When his singing talents allow him to land a scholarship to a super
fancy school, his fate will change. Filled with family secrets and
stories of the different ways life can take us, this book was the great
kick off to what promises to be an exciting series!
characters that you can root for! Harry is the definitive underdog
character. He is being raised by a single mother in a time where this
was not common. Harry seems content to follow his father's footsteps. He
isn't that interested in school and then fate intervenes and sends him
on a different path.
I also really liked the setting. I loved the
juxtaposition through Harry's relatively calm, no frills life with his
mother and the lives of Harry's newfound friends at his new school. They
are so different from each other but are still able to find common
ground and really solidify their friendship. There are also some secret
connections throughout the book that I'll go into more detail on below.
biggest reason I enjoyed this book is all of the family secrets. Oh,
there are some doozies in here. I don't want to give anything away but
there are a lot of secret connections between Harry and some of the
other characters in the book and I loved seeing them unraveled
throughout the book.
Overall, this was an intriguing start that will definitely keep me reading!