Book Chats: The Marriage Pact by Michelle Richmond (Link Up with Us!)

The Marriage Pact  was way better than I expected. Yes, I was intrigued by the description prior to reading, but the novel was jus...

The Marriage Pact was way better than I expected. Yes, I was intrigued by the description prior to reading, but the novel was just so interesting!

Brief synopsis: A young married couple, Alice and Jake, receive a mysterious box from a client of Alice's (she's a lawyer) as a wedding gift. The box has two words etched on it: The Pact. Inside the box is another box. What could this mysterious box hold in store for the couple? They soon find out after signing contracts to enter into the Marriage Pact. The rules are abundant and strict. What happens when one of them breaks a simple rule? Alice and Jake are about to find out how far they would go to save their marriage.

This novel is intriguing, thrilling, and just another one on the long lists of thrillers I've been reading lately that are nearly impossible to put down. I found myself reading at every opportunity that I had. The chapters were short, so it was easy to get through chapters at a time.

I started not trusting anyone in the novel. Like Jake, I began becoming paranoid and I just was not sure where the story was going to take me next.

While the story was a little longer than average, at close to 450 pages, I still wanted more. There were a couple of things I feel like could have been given some more information; some side characters that could have been beneficial to the story if added in a little more; but nothing that broke it for me.

The ending was a little surprising to me, but I felt like it wrapped up well if quickly. I definitely enjoyed the novel and would definitely recommend it.

Now, continue to follow along for a quick chat between me and Dara from Peonies & Bees.

Warning: spoilers below.

What was your overall impression of the book? 
Dara — Good choice with The Marriage Pact. I really liked it!
Kayla — Yes, me too! I was so intrigued by it. I just couldn't put it down.

Did you decide right away if you liked or disliked the book? 
K — The title is what grabbed my attention at first and then when I read the description, it sounded soooo interesting. I'm really glad I read it.
D — I was intrigued by the book title and cover art, you didn't even have to give me a description of the book. 
K — I was intrigued because I was basing my thoughts on my personal feelings related to the pact's rules.
D — I believe one of the main driving factors into me being so intrigued with the concept and plot IS because I'm a newlywed. If I were single, I don't know if I'd find it as exciting. Do you think a readers marital status could have an effect? 
K — I think so. Or even someone in a committed relationship might have stronger feelings than a single person.

Did you feel strongly about any of the characters? 
D — I didn't really like Alice or Jake. I thought Alice was quite insufferable in many ways, and Jake was a bit of baby. I liked that the entire story was told from his perspective and I trusted him as a narrator.
K — I agree. I definitely trusted Jake a narrator, but I didn't dislike him. I didn't trust Alice at all and I really didn't like her very much either. I also did trust Jake's friend from college, Joanna, but I didn't expect her to be conducting an experiment on him. That was so shocking! I also enjoyed the data, which I very much wanted to share with my husband.
D — I was a bit shocked about Joanna too, I wasn't expecting that. The book was pretty tough to put down. I kept wanting to know more, and dive deeper.

How about the ending?
K — I'm glad they chose the option they did - because it showed they stood for their beliefs still, but it was left kind of open. Are they going to die in the desert?
D — I was happy with their choice too, it showed that they're not going to let a little power get to their heads. But yeah, I wonder how they're going to get home... do they even have their phones or wallets? If they do die (which seems like the likeliest outcome) at least they go down with pride and integrity! 
K — I enjoy a happy ending, but I am always surprised and oddly satisfied by a more realistic ending.
D — It also would've been interesting to fast forward seven -- ten years. Are they still married? Do they have a strong marriage?
K — I agree. But maybe the fact that it doesn't jump forward is the author's way of concluding that they die in the desert. It's stated so often that the prison was in the middle of nowhere, nothing for miles and miles. I think it was a pretty strong ending, even though I felt the last few chapters wrapped up kind of quick.

How did you feel about the writing style? 
D — It almost felt like reading Jake's diary, which I enjoyed.
K — I also felt like I was reading his diary, with his thoughts and feelings and whatnot. And I usually enjoy switched perspectives, but I think this book worked way better just getting info from him.

What did you find the most interesting part? 
D — I liked a lot of the data and science behind marriage, the statistics on marriage, and the rules that the pact felt they should implement onto their members. I guess I found it interesting what The Pact felt made a marriage successful or not. 
K — I was actually a little mind blow when they put Jake on display like a specimen. But the ending was also very interesting to me.
D — There were some plot elements that were a bit far fetched, and kept reminding me on Minority Report or iRobot (I don't watch a lot of movies so sorry for the early 2000's movie references).
K — I agree that some elements were definitely far-fetched, but I'm pretty okay with that in this novel. It wasn't something that turned me away from liking the story. Overall, I was pretty pleased with the book.

What did you rate it on Goodreads?
K — 4 stars

D — 4 stars

Have you read this novel? What were your thoughts?

Next month, we'll be chatting about The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith. These chats and linkups take place the last Tuesday of each month, so make sure to stop back by on June 27 to talk about our June novel. For now, link up below!

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I received The Marriage Pact free from Netgalley for review. All opinions are, as always, 100% my own.

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