Cover Image: Saturdays at Noon

Saturdays at Noon

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Member Reviews

I loved this book. From the cover I was expecting a light fluffy chick lit but it was far from it. Written so well, on a subject quite difficult, but extremely informative too. I would definitely recommend this book.
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Saturdays at Noon tells the story of Emily who meets Jake and his son Alfie at an Anger Management class. Gradually, through Alfie, they form a friendship. Alfie seems like a naughty child, but Emily has time and patience with him (that Jake doesn’t appear to have) and slowly she brings Jake round to discover the truth behind Alfie’s behaviour. 
I particularly liked the small chapters given to Alfie where he explained why he behaved like be did. 
I genuinely enjoyed this book and it was a pleasant read in the garden. Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to read in exchange for an honest review.
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loved this book, lot of frustrating moments of will they won't they but I love that, I liked the complexities of the characters too, it was a breath of fresh air to read this, I can't wait to read more.
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This was a surprising read. It's a lovely, life affirming read and was a really intimate look at mental health and trauma. I love a found family trope. Well worth the read.
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Jake and Emily meet at anger management, though neither of them needs it, right? For Jake it is either this or his marriage, and for Emily either this or prison. Jake is a stay at home dad, struggling to come to terms with his son Alfie who simply doesn't behave like he should behave. Emily, shaven headed and sharp like a razor, tries to come to terms with her broken relationship. A very unusual friendship between Emily and Alfie starts - they immediately connect and they both bring out the best of each other, even though Alfie actually doesn't form any other connections with people.

I actually am not sure what I was expecting when I started reading this book, but for sure not this what I've got - and I mean it in a very positive way. There was so much depth to this read, it was thought - provoking and very clever, full of sharp observations, realistic but also very, very readable and, both the plot and the characters, have captured my heart.

"Saturdays at Noon" was sad and uplifting at the same time and with unforgettable characters that were full of flaws but all the same relatable and real. It showed how differently people can perceive the same situation, the same event, the same world. It's a read that will make you smile and cry, feel frustrated, angry and also full of hope. It is full of hidden messages, how we shouldn't judge people, their choices and behaviour because we don't know what's really hidden in them and their heads, important and vital messages making it thought - provoking and making you wonder all the time, so really, the best kind of read. It's realistically written and it's filled with warm humour, a compelling, touching, compassionate and captivating debut novel about parenthood, with all its ups and downs, families and unusual friendship. Hugely recommended!
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A heartwarming and inspirational book. Obviously well researched which made it very believable with excellent characters who were very human which made them very likeable. A good story and an enjoyable read
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Rachel Marks' début novel, Saturdays at Noon is a delightfully quirky and unique story about an anger management group that Emily and Jake attend. It is a wonderfully moving tale encompassing marriage, family, parenting, autism, friendship and change. Emily, a confrontational, brittle and self-destructive young woman, and Jake, colossally struggling with his autistic six-year-old son Alfie, meet at their anger management classes every Saturday at noon.

Between them, Emily, Jake and Alfie take the reader on a journey filled with so many heartrending but also delightful moments. I was lured into this fabulous story by Rachel Marks' entertaining dialogue and her well drawn and compelling if perhaps, less than perfect characters. I loved that all of the players in this book had their own distinctive voices. There was so much depth to this thought-provoking read; it was very cleverly written, full of sharp observations, as well as being incredibly realistic. Both the plot and the characters totally captured my heart.

This story remained joyous and uplifting, and what also worked so wonderfully for me was the gratifyingly subtle and gentle humour threaded through parts of the story. Funny, profoundly moving and highly recommended!

I received a complimentary digital copy of this novel, at my request, from Penguin UK via NetGalley and this review is my unbiased opinion.
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loved this book - would 100% recommend and I am thoroughly looking forward to reading what this author writes next!
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Saturdays At Noon is the easy, enjoyable, feel-good story of Emily, Jake and Alfie. From the start, it is fairly obvious that Emily and Jake will not just be attendees at the same anger management class, that will become friends but it's not immediately obvious how. As it turns out, their chance meeting ends up in Jake's son Alfie taking an immediate shine to Emily. And when Jake's home situation changes and he's left in the lurch for childcare, Emily finds herself becoming a bigger part of both of their lives than she'd ever have imagined. 

I really enjoyed Saturday's at Noon. It was an easy read and even though it was quite predictable in where it was heading for the characters, it was still enjoyable. Tackling some tough subjects on the way, Saturdays at Noon is a romance with a difference. 

Thank you to NetGalley, Rachel Marks and Penguin for the eARC in exchange for an honest review.
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Emily has been sent to anger management classes, which she is angry about. 

Jake is attending voluntarily in a bid to save his marriage to Jemma. His son Alfie is challenging. He feels like he's turning into a monster. 

Whilst both are initially highly sceptical, the group is to have the biggest impact on their lives either of them could possibly imagine. 

A chance meeting with Jake and Alfie leads to a burgeoning friendship between the three of them. As Jemma decides she can no longer carry on living with Jake, and moves to Paris, Emily becomes Alfie's childminder and what follows is a meeting of minds in the most beautiful manner. Emily begins to understand why Jake finds caring for Alfie so demanding. But she also teaches Jake how to communicate with Alfie to make life less scary for him. The chapters where Alfie narrates are a poignant and in-depth account of how it feels when the world appears a confusing and frightening place, but you're not able to express that.

As they spend more and more time together, Jake and Emily find themselves falling in love. Emily is terrified following a life of rejection and letdowns in her past. But she is brave enough to try and their love for one another is healing. There are moments of gut wrenching heartache to follow, but the reader who loves a happy ending will not be disappointed with this one. 

Charming and poignant, I connected with all the characters, which is a testament to the quality of writing.
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loved this book - would 100% recommend and am looking forward to reading what this author writes next!
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I wasn’t sure what to expect but I ended up really enjoying this book.
It’s been a soothing book for a troubled mind. A misunderstood little boy, an unmoored woman, and a the boy’s father... the characters become well rounded as the story develops. A good book about not fitting in but learning to find your niche in the world.
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5☆ A Heart Warming and Uplifting story of Friendships, Change and the ups and downs of Parenting!

Emily & Jake meet at an anger management class where they are both attending.
Jake a father to Alfie 6yr old & hubby to Jemma. He's a stay at home Dad whilst Jemma works.
Emily has lots of issues, she's definitely a flawed character despite thinking she doesn't need anger classes, but she has a big heart.

Jake agreed to attend therapy classes as he's son has challenging behaviour and it's driving a wedge between his marriage.

Jake is so sick of always ending up the bad guy, he looks after Alfie full time whilst Jemma works. But he feels like whatever he tries to do he can't win and gets it wrong.
Jemma is not supportive of Jake & his endless struggles with Alfie she sees them as an inconvenience.

It all gets too much for Jemma and she ups and leaves, leaving Jake and Alfie to struggle alone.

But Alfie has built up a really sweet and endearing bond with Emily after they bump into her a few times. She can connect with him like no one else can. Alfie asks his Dad if she can become his childminder and she readily agrees.
But has she just bitten off more than she can chew!

Alfie is quiet a handful and I have to be completely honest he wore me out just reading this book lol
But deep down he is a sweet, endearing, loving lil boy desperate for love and attention and with the help of Emily she helps Alfie and Jake be better, and with Alfies heart melting so is Jake's towards Emily. 

Saturday's at Noon is an amazing book. I struggled to put it down. I've never read a book quiet like this before.
It's a heart warming and uplifting story about Family Life, Relationships, Change, The ups and downs of parenting, starting over and learning to let your guard down and trust!
Alfie is such a huge character, for a lil boy with such a huge personality, with so many ups and downs he seriously gets under your skin and in to your heart. If you read this book which I really hope you do then you will understand exactly what I mean by Alfie. I'm hooked. 

Thank you to Michael Joseph for this copy which I reviewed honestly and voluntarily.
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I did not expect to love this book as much as I did.
Jake and Emily meet at anger management, he is angry with his son, she has cut all her hair off. But all is not as it seems.
Their relationship builds slowly and awkwardly but it becomes something which they, and Jake's son Alfie rely on.
Told with real love and experience, great.
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What a refreshing book that goes against the 'everything is perfect' mindset that seems to be around these days.  I absolutely loved Saturday's at Noon - the premise was great, after reading the synopsis I knew that I wanted to read it and was so pleased to be approved.

The three point of views were all so well done, especially Alfie's which was heartbreaking at times, so young and yet so old before his time too.  Emily and Jake were great protagonists and I really enjoyed reading about their differing, and then converging storylines.

All in all a fantastic contemporary read with a lot of depth - 5*
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A really enjoyable read. I found myself grabbed early on by the character of Alfie. I loved his inner monologues that help us understand his outer behaviour - often more than his parents. I had sympathy for their frustration in not having the insight we had into his thinking. His relationship with Emily works because she doesn’t expect anything of him, Jemma and Jake had expectations about the child they would have and although they love Alfie he represents a lot of resentment and pain. They are grieving for the child they expected and longed for, Their experience was quite different, finding their sin difficult from the beginning, 

When Jemma leaves I wasn’t surprised but I was heartbroken for Alfie who simply has no idea how difficult it is to look after him, I thought the author was brilliant at building tension in the scenes where Jemma and Jake are struggling to cope. She also contrasted them beautifully with Alfie’s inner world where everything he does is completely natural and not designed to cause stress. It’s like watching people speaking two completely different languages. We don’t know why Emily is at anger management or why she has shaved her head, but it’s clear that the walls she’s built around herself might be about to come down, Jake has no idea why his son gets along with this spiky woman, who he can’t weigh up at all. Emily can’t understand why Jake goes to the group. I love the way their ideas about each other change and how they start to view themselves differently too. 

Long review on my blog in March 

When Alfie meets Emily, who Jake knows from anger management, he takes to her immediately. Similarly Emily takes Alfie just as she finds him, with no expectation or concern about his behaviour,
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This is a lovely, thought provoking book that covers many topics. I really enjoyed reading Emily’s part of the story and how her relationships developed with others (I loved the relationship with her Gran!) . The topic of autism is covered so well, but towards the end I found this consumed the story  and I found myself wishing it was more about Emily and her journey. The ending was rather predictable but in a very satisfying way - you can have a great book without a “ twist”.
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I am no longer interested in reviewing this book so unfortunately I will no longer be reading and reviewing this
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Emily and Jake meet at anger management classes, and the only thing they seem to have in common, is that neither of them thinks they should be there.

Jake’s son, Alfie, makes a connection with Emily. A connection which Jake doesn’t understand, especially when he is struggling to develop the same connection to his difficult six year old. But when a change in circumstances means Jake needs to go back to work, Emily appears to be the best choice to look after Alfie.

As Emily and Alfie grow closer, Jake is forced to change his view of his son’s challenging nature and embrace his differences. 

Aww I loved this book! So refreshingly honest and cute but heartbreaking at the same time. Written in a compelling and beautiful way, Saturdays at Noon is a story about love, challenging familial relationships and acceptance.

The writing is beautiful and I never would have guessed this was a debut novel, Rachel manages to portray the difficulties of raising a child who is different, in a world where people are quick to judge, brilliantly but honestly. She doesn’t sugar coat some of Jake’s behaviour, but she also avoids portraying him as a bad dad. 

Emily is another character who may initially seem unlikeable because of her spikey personality but is written in such a way that you can’t help being drawn to her and wondering about her back story.

Of course the show stealer is Alfie. The chapters told from his point of view were both funny and poignant and totally melted my heart. I’m not going to say anything more as I don’t want to give any spoilers but this little boy is a superstar! 

I connected emotionally to this fantastic story and therefore would highly recommend it!

4.5 ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️💫 (rounded up to 5)

Thank you to the NetGalley and the publisher (Penguin UK - Michael Joseph) for providing a copy. All opinions are my own and provided willingly
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Emily doesn’t think she should be there. Jake just wants to save his marriage. Alfie can’t stop worrying.

But somehow, they all end up spending their Saturdays at anger management class. Emil and Jake don’t see eye-to-eye, but an unlikely friendship between Emily and Alfie forces them together. This is a novel about family, struggle and friendship, and it is wonderful.

The novel alternates between the three narratives of Jake, Emily and Alfie, and each character is so excellently crafted by Marks that I couldn’t help but fall in love. Little Alfie is absolutely precious and I loved the insights into his mind throughout the novel. I loved the portrayal of his consciousness, and how affected he was by his anxiety. I also loved his enthusiasm, his love for Emily and his innocence - he was just such a sweet character. Emily is guarded and keeps her cards close, but her character slowly progressed through the novel as she opened up and revealed her secrets, and this was really shown in her narrative. And finally, Jake, who I was initially unsure of, captured my heart as he revealed he is just a over-worked Dad desperate to give his child the same beloved childhood he had.

There were some lovely moments of humour in this novel, particularly from Alfie, and I definitely laughed out loud a few times. I really liked Marks’ writing style, and will definitely be looking out for further works by her after this incredible debut. I found the beginning just a tad slow, but as soon as I fell for the characters I knew I was hooked. It was the ending that really made it a 5 star read for me. It had that will-it-won’t-it back and forth for how the ending was going to play out, and I really wasn’t sure which way it was going to go. I was almost sure, but there was just a little part of me that thought it might end a different way, and I was definitely gripped for the last 100 pages.

I would definitely recommend this novel. It took the concepts of contemporary fiction and romance and twisted them into a unique debut, and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Thank you to @michaeljbooks and @netgalley for this copy of Saturdays at Noon in exchange for an honest review.
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