Saving You: a book that got me over a reading slump

Saving You Charlotte Nash goodreads

What is this about?: Mallory is going to get her son back. She is going to walk up to her douchebag husband’s new place in New York and take Harry back to Australia. But of course the way there is not the easiest of journeys.

What else is this about?: For Mal, it’s about finding the strength she never realised she had to face an unsure future. For Jock, Ernie and Zadie it’s about coming to terms with their past.


One single mother. Three escaped pensioners. A road trip across the United States.

The new emotionally compelling page-turner by Australia’s Charlotte Nash.

In their tiny pale green cottage under the trees, Mallory Cook and her five-year-old son, Harry, are a little family unit who weather the storms of life together. Money is tight after Harry’s father, Duncan, abandoned them to expand his business in New York. So when Duncan fails to return Harry after a visit, Mallory boards a plane to bring her son home any way she can.

During the journey, a chance encounter with three retirees on the run from their care home leads Mallory on an unlikely group road trip across the United States. Zadie, Ernie, and Jock each have their own reasons for making the journey and along the way the four of them will learn the lengths they will travel to save each other – and themselves.

Saving You is the beautiful, emotionally compelling page-turner by Charlotte Nash, bestselling Australian author of The Horsemanand The Paris Wedding. If you love the stories of Jojo Moyes and Fiona McCallum you will devour this book.

I tend to read and post book reviews out of order, so at the moment, I’ve been through this wird new year hump where I haven’t been able to read a book, but I have comfortably been listening to them — go figure.

So when Saving You arrived, I thought perhaps getting out of my comfort zone would help — and it did.

Three pensioners and one single mother: sounds like…

The tagline for an epic road trip movie, doesn’t it

And it is kind of an epic road trip. Stranded very far away from Harry in a chaotic airport where everyone is cursing a volcano in Iceland that was only doing what volcanos do, Mal runs into three residents from the nursing home where she works in Australia.

They’ve staged a nursing-home jail break, and a volcano isn’t going to stop them from going on their road trip.

The most heartbreaking thing though, is that Zadie has Alzheimer’s and Ernie is taking on her on this trip to remind her of the good they shared at different places earlier in their lives… and he has something special planned for her that shows that under his gruff and authoritarian exterior is a man who is utterly devoted to Zadie.

Jock is there to come to terms with his past, and is the one that Mal can talk to more easily because Ernie tends to be very 1950s when he isn’t thinking properly about what he’s saying.

Mal, Mal just wants her son back. Duncan her douche husband left them a year ago to go to the US to seek his fortune after Mal has spent most of their marriage supporting him. She kind of expects them to get back together, but that’s a little bit of denial talking as well and avoiding the inevitable — and then Duncan decides on his own Harry should stay with him.

It’s entirely possible that because this happened right up at the beginning of the book that my GRRR response to Duncan made me keep going.

What’s a roadtrip without a little romance and self-discovery

That comes in the form of AJ, a biker on a roadtrip of his own who stops to help Mal change a tyre and gets and earful for his trouble. Luckily, when something breaks, he shows up again because he’s a gentleman and was worried because they never passed him on the road, he helps her out.

From there, they meet again, though it’s entirely possible Jock was playing Cupid too (I can’t quite recall right now, because AJ) and from there Mal begins to realise there’s more to AJ. But she can’t afford to lose her focus on Harry either.

The foursome can be a combustible bunch when they want to be on this road trip — Ernie and Mal especially. Their world views are entirely opposite in some ways, and that grates on Mal’s last nerve, but she can see too how devoted Ernie is to Zadie.

However, that doesn’t stop them from an epic departure from each other when Ernie demands too much of her time — that should be spent on the way to Harry.


When she finally faces Duncan Mal begins to realise just how broken their relationship is, and that the new friends — and by that I mean AJ — might prove helpful as she prepares to fight for her son.

And yes, the ending was utterly satisfying to see Mal re-discover the strength that got her through multiple jobs, supporting Duncan and ensuring her son was brought up properly, and then across the US to find Harry again.

So yes. This hit the spot at entirely the right time for me!

Saving You is out now!


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