Review: In the Present Tense by Carrie Pack

In the Present TenseRating: 4.25 stars
Buy Link:
Amazon | All Romance | Amazon UK
Length: Novel


Miles is twenty-five and wakes next to his sleeping wife, Ana. Only Miles is convinced he is seventeen and planning a future with his boyfriend, Adam. When he learns yet again that he time traveled, Miles has to wait for everything to make sense again. Miles has nearly gone through his trust fund to find a cure for his condition, but he is no closer to learning the truth.

The one thing Miles can’t remember is why he and Adam broke up. They have not spoken in years and as Miles starts to travel more frequently, his need to find Adam also increases. His wife has reached her breaking point and goes to drastic measures as Miles appears to be losing control. But is Miles really time traveling or is he mentally ill? Is anyone truly on his side? It’s a race against time as Miles has to continue to remember the past in order to secure his future.

Whoa! Like serious holy whoa this book started out so good. I seem to frequently get the books that cannot be talked about without then spoiling their enjoyment and this one tops the list. The goal here is to find out exactly what is going on with Miles. The book takes place over several time periods, but primarily when Miles is seventeen and twenty-five. The book starts when we are told he is twenty-five and he is married to Ana. Miles believes he is seventeen, still in high school, and dating Adam, the boy he loves.

We find out quickly that Miles has been seeing a psychiatrist for years and truly believes that he is time traveling. His doctor reassures him that he is having disassociative episodes, but what is exactly the truth? Miles has spent years and most of his trust fund on research to cure him, but the episodes are coming faster and more often. Ana is barely hanging on at this point as she never knows what version of Miles she is going to get.

While Miles is the main POV character, the author gives us POV for Ana and Adam as well. The shift in POV and time are easy to follow as each character as well as each time frame has a distinct voice. But the mystery and intrigue that drives the story is Miles. What exactly is happening to him? Can he trust anyone or is he having a complete psychotic break? There are clues, of course, set within an atmosphere that is tense and highly charged.

So much of this book was fast moving and a race for Miles to attempt to piece his life together. Then, well into the book, there was a hospital setting and the action then slowed way down, which was not the best timing for me. All of the information was needed to piece the story together, but the pacing changed too drastically. Then, as often happens with time travel stories, there are lots of questions that remain. Sometimes Miles understood he was in a different time and had all of his memories and other times he didn’t and the continuity on that issue wasn’t clear. We are told that he has spent almost all of his trust fund on research, but that area needed a lot more explanation to understand what exactly was being done for him.

Miles’ relationship with Adam is woven in throughout the entire story, but any present day romantic story line is way on the back burner. The ending left a whole lot of questions and for as engaged as I was for most of the book, the ending was less than satisfying. Not all of the character’s motivations become clear by the end and then there is a time jump. Of course there are jumps in time as it’s the basis of the book, but the gap was not filled in and the book did not feel finished. That was exactly it as the book felt incomplete with a secondary character storyline left wide open as well and a lot of areas that weren’t tied up at all.

The romance isn’t the focus here and the structure of the story may not be for everyone and for most of the book I would tell you none of that matters and you should read it anyway. So much of the book was fast paced and intriguing, but the ending left the book feeling unfinished and that becomes my greatest hesitation in recommending this book.

michelle signature

Comments

  1. I’m a big fan of time travel stories, so this definitely piques my interest. Thanks for a balanced review, Michelle.

Leave a Comment

*

%d bloggers like this: