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“Be careful what you wish for.”

John Marrs never ceases to thrill us, entertain us, and leave us on the edge of our seats with his nail-biting suspense. We love this author’s stories! They’re improbable, yet so eerily believable we find ourselves always wondering ‘could this really happen?’ such is the brilliant way he tells his stories.

“Love is one of the last remaining things in this world that is free.”

The Marriage Act is another unnerving suspenseful novel set in the future and told from differing viewpoints, another aspect this author does so well, weaving each POV together. It’s full-on and so gripping! Once again, every narrator has a story – whether it be sad, grisly, peculiar, or uncomfortable, and every POV is a page-turner! We frantically turn each page, taking everything in whilst waiting for the pieces to fall into place sending our heads spinning and stomachs churning.

John Marrs has created a dystopian world where the Government has set about controlling people by having them sign up to The Marriage Act. It’s a way the Government monitors the couples by randomly recording their conversations, leaving it up to AI t\(Audite) to decipher whether a couple is happy or doomed, and the success of it is dividing the country.

‘Even in these so-called enlightened times, it’s more of a sport to try and shut down a woman with a voice than it is with a man who says the same thing.’

Couples are enticed to sign up by way of financial freedom – cheaper mortgages, better living standards, better health etc, but are they selling their souls (or their hearts) for the privilege? It’s an interesting notion and one full of pitfalls and those seeking to abuse the system.

Through each viewpoint we see how the Sanctity of Marriage Act affects each person – the dire consequences they face for financial comfort. Is it worth it? And can a government really be trusted to know what the heart wants? Allowing a computer to decide if your marriage is at risk is a slippery slope. After all, artificial intelligence can’t feel, it has no sense of humour, and it can’t detect sarcasm or wit. It’s going to be fraught with danger, right?

And doesn’t John Marrs explore this so wonderfully! When our brave new world of AI and Deepfakes, Government control, and the dangers of social media is so topical at the moment, John Marrs picks at our insecurities and intensifies our thoughts and imagination.

“Then why not just leave social media?”
“Because, without it, you might as well not exist.”

With complex characters, nail-biting suspense, and intrinsically woven storylines that lead to its unputdownable climax, John Marrs has once again delivered an entertaining yet alarmingly thrilling suspense, that leaves you pondering…could it? Would they? Scary stuff!


From the bestselling author of The One, now an eight-part Netflix series. Set in the same world as The OneThe Marriage Act is a dark, high-concept thriller.

‘One of the most exciting original thriller writers’ Simon Kernick

What if marriage was the law? Dare you disobey?

Britain. The near-future. A right-wing government believes it has the answer to society’s ills – the Sanctity of Marriage Act, which actively encourages marriage as the norm, punishing those who choose to remain single.

But four couples are about to discover just how impossible relationships can be when the government is monitoring every aspect of our personal lives, monitoring every word, every minor disagreement . . . and will use every tool in its arsenal to ensure everyone will love, honour and obey.

Black Mirror meets thriller with a dash of Naomi Alderman’s The Power.

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