Book Review: Saturdays at Noon

A story about love and connection by Rachel Marks

Star Rating

There are some books you enjoy reading, some you don’t and some you genuinely cannot put down. For me, Saturdays at Noon falls into the third category. Within pages I knew that this was a special book, and within days I’d finished it and wished I hadn’t. I just wanted it to keep going.

The story itself is familiar in many ways; a woman (Emily) and a man (Jake) meet during anger management sessions and form a bond thanks to the man’s son (Alfie). Alfie has autism, though his parents, particularly his dad Jake, is reluctant to accept this, and Alfie’s behaviour causes certain challenges for Jake and his wife. The book is about how Jake, Alfie, and Emily all learn a number of valuable life lesson’s thanks to Alfie and his view of the world.

But while the book is about autism, it’s also not. It’s really about how to build connections with people who are different from you, and the importance of accepting people as they are. In short, it’s about love.

And it’s a beautifully written and engaging story about love. Rachel Marks’s style of writing really resonated with me. It’s not overly complex, but it’s still very descriptive and immersive. Her portrayal of the main characters feels really deep and real, and even before you get to know their full story, you know that these are complicated people, who have experienced problems we’re all familiar with. Characters are such an important part of a story for me, and personally I think Marks nails it in the book.

As you move through the story it’s not hard to see where it’s going. But even the slight tilt towards predictability didn’t stop my enjoyment of the book, because it’s just such a delight to read the words that Marks writes. And you’re really rooting for the characters, so you hope that the story does lead the way you expect.

Overall the enjoyment I got from Saturdays at Noon didn’t come from twists and turns, or shock value, it cam from the way it made me feel – uplifted. And sometimes that is just what you need from a book. As a debut book I think it’s truly wonderful, and I’m excited to see what Rachel Marks writes next.

Saturdays at Noon by Rachel Marks is available on Amazon now.

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