The Marriage Pact

The Marriage Pact

The Sunday Times bestseller, sold in 30 languages

 “A smart, searing, frightening look at modern love.”

Winner of the Palle Rosenkrantz Prize for the Best Crime Novel published in Denmark

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A high-concept, fast-moving thriller…a gripping and intriguing read.” The Sunday Mirror

“A fun, can’t stop-eating-the-potato chips kind of premise.” Marisha Pessl for The New York Times

“A pacey page-turner of a novel . . . extreme but grippingly thought-provoking” Richard & Judy Book Club, UK

The Marriage Pact is a tense, twisting, quirky novel of growing dread—and a love story with a richly imagined relationship between a wife and husband…Gripping, thought-provoking, and irresistible.” ~Dean Koontz, #1 New York Times bestselling author of The Silent Corner

“Pacey, well-written, and refreshingly unique, this is a very smart thriller.” Isabelle Broom for Heat Magazine, UK

Sold in 30 languages. An August 2017 Indie Next pick; a Library Reads and Loan Stars selection. A Richard & Judy Book Club Pick in the UK.  A Northern California Independent Booksellers Association Bestseller. One of BBC Culture’s 10 Best Beach Reads of 2017 and’s top beach reads. Winner of the Audiofile Earphones Award. Criminal Element’s best books of 2017. Film rights optioned to Twentieth Century Fox. 


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.

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A standout summer read. Think Stephen King’s story ‘Quitters Inc.,’ but for marriage…Michelle Richmond expertly keeps the suspense at a can’t-stop-reading edge, and the couple are interesting and sympathetic so you can’t help rooting for them.” Salem Macknee, The Charlotte Observer

“The by-now familiar domestic suspense setup of a troubled wife leaving a marriage is turned upside down…Questioning a secretive group’s arbitrary ‘marriage rules,’ this fast-paced nail-biter goes in unpredictable directions…It also raises thoughtful questions about individual agency and marital commitment. Verdict: With strong writing, intriguing characters, and a compelling conceit, this psychological thriller seems destined for the top of summer reading lists. Recommended as a fresh voice for readers of Gillian Flynn or Ruth Ware.” ~Melanie Kindrachuk, Library Journal, starred review.”

“Creepy and engrossing.” Booklist

“Riveting psychological suspense!… Beware. This book will keep you all night…” ~Lisa Gardner, # 1 New York Times bestselling author of Right Behind You

“Michelle Richmond is, simply put, a great storyteller. And The Marriage Pact, without gimmick or tricks, is a twisting, suspenseful, keep-you-up-all-night thriller. But it’s more than, too. It’s a deep, insightful, nearly voyeuristic view into the modern marriage… A smart, engrossing, scary read!” Lisa Unger, New York Times bestselling author of The Red Hunter

“A brilliant premise for a novel of psychological suspense, tautly plotted and deftly written.” JP Delaney, New York Times bestselling author of The Girl Before

“On the small shelf of truly chilling thrillers about marriage, make room for Michelle Richmond’s The Marriage Pact. It ranks with The Stepford Wives and Gone Girl as a terrifying look at what it really means to say ‘I do.'” Joseph Finder New York Times bestselling author of Guilty Minds)

“An absolutely riveting, spine-tingling and frightening read. A roller-coaster of a novel, an audacious mix of a high-concept thriller with gorgeous writing” – Karen Perry bestselling author of Girl Unknown 

“Every page of The Marriage Pact hummed with suspense. A daringly original novel about the best and worst of love.” Carla Buckley, author of The Deepest Secret

Clever and original…as smart as it is scary.” Gin Phillips, author of Fierce Kingdom

“This sometimes disturbing, always thought-provoking, stunner of a novel will keep you reading far too late into the night.” Karen Dionne author of The Marsh King’s Daughter

A terrifying thriller that distills modern marriage down to its confusing core.” Nina Sadowsky, author of Just Fall

“First class suspense! You won’t be able to turn the pages fast enough. Paula Daly, author of The Mistake I Made

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