The Marriage Pact: A Novel - Michelle Richmond

In this relentlessly paced novel of psychological suspense, New York Times bestselling author Michelle Richmond crafts an intense and shocking tale that asks: How far would you go to protect your marriage?

Newlyweds Alice and Jake are a picture-perfect couple. Alice, once a singer in a well-known rock band, is now a successful lawyer. Jake is a partner in an up-and-coming psychology practice. Their life together holds endless possibilities. After receiving an enticing wedding gift from one of Alice’s prominent clients, they decide to join an exclusive and mysterious group known only as The Pact.

The goal of The Pact seems simple: to keep marriages happy and intact. And most of its rules make sense. Always answer the phone when your spouse calls. Exchange thoughtful gifts monthly. Plan a trip together once per quarter. . . .
Never mention The Pact to anyone.
Alice and Jake are initially seduced by the glamorous parties, the sense of community, their widening social circle of like-minded couples.
And then one of them breaks the rules.
The young lovers are about to discover that for adherents to The Pact, membership, like marriage, is for life. And The Pact will go to any lengths to enforce that rule.
For Jake and Alice, the marriage of their dreams is about to become their worst nightmare.


Five stars. I'm sold. This book got me through and through. Go read it. Now.


I got ten percent into this one and thought to myself, "Wow!" I was intrigued. I needed to keep reading. It was a good thing that I was on a plane and thus able to tune out the rest of the world because this book drew me in and kept me there the whole way.


But at the same time that I'm telling you to read this, please don't. It's chilling. It's frightful. It's dreadful. It made me physically uncomfortable. (It definitely did not help the plane seat.) I felt so uncomfortable reading this because I dreaded what was to come--it was scary, though in a psychological sense, and I found myself fearing. I definitely shuddered out loud because of this book. I definitely closed it and told myself I'd stop, just to pick it up a few minutes later.


The plot is fabulous. I was still thinking about this book a few days later, and have already detailed it enthusiastically to two non-readers. I'm disappointed that I have to wait until it's released to go and tell everyone to read it. The ending did get a little bit hard to believe, but never realistic because the entire book had set it up to be so. It wasn't until after finishing this that I actually realised that it was so.


The detailing of this was very real. As someone who grew up in San Francisco, I fully vouch for this book. The details it provided were all believable and it contributed to how real this book was--I could see it taking place in the streets I used to walk down, which was a lot of fun. Jake and Alice additionally were interesting and real characters. Jake's job working as a therapist really made his outlooks interesting and I enjoyed all his thoughts about what made a good marriage and in relation to both kids and adults.


It was so clear how much he loved and respected Alice, too. I think everyone in a successful relationship has wondered why their partner is with them or questioned if the other person actually loves them back. Though Jake's tone could be clinical, I really believed his passion for multi-faceted Alice.


This is a must-read.


I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.