Only Time Will Tell. By Jeffrey Archer


Book Reviewer

By Jeffrey Archer.



A review by Granny. 3***

Two families, the Barringtons and the Cliftons, get seriously entwined in this tale that starts off in
Bristol in 1919. A ‘Works day out’ to Weston-Super-Mare, is an unlikely place to start a saga, but what a day it was.
Our Hero, Harry Clifton, is born in 1920 and from that moment the mystery starts.
I have never been a great reader of family sagas but, as I progressed from chapter to chapter, each one telling the story of the different characters in the story, I found myself anticipating what was to come next.
Each character in the book took on a personality and brought a different perspective to the tale as it unfolded.
The Barringtons, ship owners, titled, with the obligatory ‘Black sheep’. There has to be someone you can hiss at.
The Cliftons, dock workers, poor and downtrodden, from whence our hero will rise.
This first book takes us through the depression, a period when after the ‘Great War’, that one that was to end all wars, the country was till suffering from the loss of so many young lives.
From Harry Cliftons birth, through his childhood, to define his education.
I found that his rise from being a young lad who never went to school, who could neither read nor write, to his entry into Oxford University, a little difficult to believe. But maybe that’s just me.
Throw in a recluse with a Victoria Cross, a few school teachers, a choir Master, a selection of Dock workers and we have an eclectic mix.
The descriptive way Jeffrey Archer takes us through this period was very clever. The build up of the characters was such that I wanted to get to the next chapter to see where we were heading. It took me two days to read the 387 pages, and it was a pleasure.
I can only find two areas that I wasn’t happy with. The discussion regarding his wish to enter the Royal Navy, at the outbreak of WW2, was I think slightly out. I doubt that the Captain of one of His Majesty’s Capital Ships would take on ‘deck hands’ from shore. Even as far back as 1939 I’m sure that the normal recruitment and training of Seaman members of the RN was mandatory.
The second was on the very last page of the book. Our hero is arrested and given the ‘Miranda’ warning. This warning came into force in 1966 , 27 years after our hero was given it.
That apart, I enjoyed this book. I shall await the next book with much anticipation. I really do want to
know how Harry manages to get out of his troubles, how his romantic endeavours come to fruition.
Our Hero will get ‘fair maiden’, wont he? If he gets his wish, and joins the Royal Navy, I will await , with pleasure, the story as it progresses.
You'd think, wouldn't you, that if he's going to plagiarise other people he'd plagiarise people who could actually write?

The perjuring lying bullying bullshitting fibbing jailbird scumbag fecking bastard cnut ******.
I'm convinced the slimy little turd has some sort of computer programme that you tap in a lot of different cliched characters, and it permutates them into a, in the loosest sense, a "novel."

A 24 carat, ocean going, A1 at Lloyds ****.......

Granny, you are the "Fragrant Mary Archer" and I claim my prize.


Book Reviewer
He brags in the dust jacket that he is the only person with the most number ones in x, y and z, but I couldn't help smirking at the non - fiction entry. What was it for 'Lord Archole'? Oh, yes - the prison diaries.
Granny, you are the "Fragrant Mary Archer" and I claim my prize.

I suspect that 'Granny' may be someone who constantly advertises the fact that he lives at 'Grantchester'.

It's the sort of halfwitted 'clever' thing one of his ill-crayoned characters would do. He's probably looking for some dits to pinch and pass off as his own, and thought he'd do a bit of advertising whilst he was at it.

Just noticed it is BOOK ONE of the series, oh Jesus ******* Christ, how many more innocent trees have to die to pollute W H Smiths at airport bookstalls.....


Kit Reviewer
Book Reviewer
Reviews Editor
Remember, this is a review of a book as read by granny which he seemed to enjoy. I have enjoyed many of Archer's books - don't mean I have to like the guy.

Have a go at the book by all means, but please don't have a go at someone who has actually come forward to do something for the site.

The book is now in the Reviews section so please take any comments there.
Well Jeffrey Archer is always an exquisite author and I have read ONLY TIME WILL TELL which is such an amazing book to read .

Perhaps you should read a dictionary, amazing and exquisite are not the right adjectives.

Mark The Convict

But 'spam' is a noun, despite its increasingly common misuse as a verb. Maybe it's really a gerund?


War Hero
I am reading Only Time Will Tell at the moment and have to say it is a good read with quite a few twists and turns. It even has a modest VC winner as a central character.

Aside from his 'extra curricula' activities and underhand methods of trying to evade the long arm of the law Archer's books are well written and engaging.

'Paths of Glory' which traces the career of mountaineer George Mallory is superb and his numerous short stories books 'Quiver Full of Arrows', Twelve Red Herrings, 'And Thereby Hangs a Tale' etc etc are excellent.

Sent from my iPad 2 (Platinum Version 64GB)
Read it on Saturday. A typical Jeffrey Archer pot boiler - enjoyable and paced accurately but with a few squeaking corners cut here and giant leaps of "then a miracle happened" there. So what, it passed the time and left me interested enough in the characters to want to read on. Stand fast the annoying deckhand on HMS Resolution thing.

Yes, there is no doubt that Jeffrey Archer is an odious little shit and a lying, scumbag, rah-rah-rah etc. He can however knock off a good novel, hardly great literature but a good read. Let's face it, many authors are knobs regardless of the quality of their output - look at Martin Amis?

Frankly Dickens was probably a bit of a ****.

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