Alex and Charlie met as kids and were the best of friends. Through high school and college, they bonded and went from friends to lovers. They are a united pair and the thought of life without the other never occurs to either of them.
When Charlie’s father dies, he leaves behind a pocket watch, as well as a lot of questions. As Charlie develops increasingly erratic behavior, Alex begins to worry their relationship might not survive. When Alex confronts Charlie, one click of the watch has the men going back in time 100 years. When Charlie arrives in 1917, however, Alex isn’t with him and the search is on for his partner. However, when he does find Alex, Alex has no memory of who Charlie is or their life together. The law is not on their side and Charlie has to reclaim his life with Alex and bring them back to the present for their happy ever after.
The blurb on this book had me expecting a story about time travel and that was the draw for me. While there is time travel in this book, it was oddly placed with little explanation of how the events were occurring. The time travel is also only one portion of the story and it then did not fit in well with the rest of the book.
The relationship between Charlie and Alex is absolute. They were the best of friends and when they came out as teens, they knew they would be together forever. We are given an overview of their relationship and we can see their connection, but the book overall lacked depth, coupled with dialogue that was often stiff.
When Charlie is given the pocket watch after his father dies, we are told many things. We are told his father time traveled often and we are then told that Charlie has started time traveling as well. We are not shown any of it and are only shown how time traveling is affecting Charlie’s behavior. Charlie just accepts the whole time travel thing as well and never once questions any of it. And, for two men that have been together their entire lives, Alex is always jealous and his first thought is that Charlie is cheating on him, which made no sense given what we are told about the two of them.
They then both time travel together by accident. The blurb wants to convince you that Charlie has to make Alex fall in love with him again and that’s not quite the entire story. Alex has no memory of his life with Charlie, but he knows that the life he is living doesn’t fit. Charlie also had opportunity to just get him and Alex back to present, and why he is instead trying to woo Alex didn’t make a whole lot of sense either, because Alex’s memory doesn’t comes back until they return home.
The rest of the book is Charlie and Alex building their life and making their relationship stronger. There are plenty of intimate scenes, but I kept waiting for the story that never showed up. There is no mention of any repercussions from time traveling and there is also no further time travel that we are shown. What Charlie and Alex do with the pocket watch was irresponsible and also didn’t make much sense to me. While Charlie and Alex’s relationship was, of course, completely secure by the end of the book, the ending was also left completely unfinished and did not work for me.
Only Time Will Tell did not work for me as a time travel story and the pieces that were there did not fit in with the rest of the book. This storyline and execution was a struggle for me to enjoy.