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The Marriage Pact: A Novel Hardcover – November 3, 2015
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One of InStyle's November Book Club Picks!
"Entertaining...with a few laugh-out-loud moments, M.J. Pullen's novel is a very enjoyable read. Fans of Jane Green or Emily Giffin are sure to enjoy The Marriage Pact." ―Shelf Awareness
“A charming cross between romance and chick lit...Pullen’s characters are realistic, and the dialogue is funny, making this an excellent choice for fans of early Jane Green, Jennifer Weiner, and Emily Giffin.” ―Booklist
"This novel is chick lit to its core and makes for a light and easy read." ―Library Journal
“M.J. Pullen brings clever quirkiness to romantic comedy!” ―Penny Reid, international bestselling author of Neanderthal Seeks Human
“Funny, wise and painfully true. Make sure you clear your weekend before you pick up The Marriage Pact!” ―Chrissie Manby, author of Getting Over Mr. Right
“All five stars for The Marriage Pact; a roller-coaster ride through love, friendship and self-discovery. Well done!” ―Valerie Joan Connors, author of In Her Keeping and Shadow of a Smile
“A fun, frothy read with an artfully crafted main plot that draws the reader in and won't let go.” ―Elle Filz, ChickLitWriters.com
“There are times you laugh so hard at the antics between Jake and Marci, then there are times that you just have to sigh at the romance of it all....This story is a must read that will have you eagerly awaiting the next installment in the series!” ―Faerie Tale Books
“Will keep you reading...in one sitting like I did. Well done!” ―Let's Get Booked!
About the Author
MANDA (M.J.) PULLEN, former therapist and marketer, is the author of complex, funny contemporary romances, including The Marriage Pact. She was raised in the suburbs of Atlanta by a physicist and a flower child, who taught her that life is tragic and funny, and real love is anything but simple. She has a weakness for sappy movies, craft beer, gossip, and boys who talk baseball. After traveling around Europe and living in cities like Austin and Portland, she returned to Atlanta where she lives with her husband and two sons.
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Top customer reviews
To be honest, I was pretty disappointed. Marci has never been my favorite character of the three women, and I didn't care much for her within these pages either. She seemed a little immature and helpless, and it was difficult for me to believe she was thirty years old. I also had a hard time believing she and Jake were meant to be. So much of the book focused on her relationship with Doug, which while morally repugnant was at least interesting. I never really felt a connection between her and Jake.
Even though I didn't really like this book, I'm glad it's around because it introduces us to Suzanne and Rebecca, both of whom have more interesting stories. If you read this book and are on the fence about continuing with the series, I would urge you to reconsider. Regrets Only is definitely on my top 10 favorite new reads of the year.
The story itself, however, I hated. While infidelity may occur all the time, it obviously is a real hot button for me. I tried to like these characters but in my opinion, Doug is a pig and deserves whatever heartbreak he gets. Marci I just wanted to take by the shoulders and shake. HARD! Jake, the only main character I really liked, I just wanted to give a big hug to and tell him to move on. This story for me just didn't give me the escape I look for while reading a great book. Quite frankly it just made me mad. The author did wrap the story up nicely and give me the HEA I crave but it still wasn't enough.
Marci is involved with a married man, Doug in Texas when she turns thirty. That doesn't work out so Jake comes to Texas to help here move back to Georgia. Then the book returns to the not so great flashback of college for Marci and Jake and friends, which was way too long with far too many unnecessary details. Jake is basically a nice guy and he matures and grows with Marci into their relationship.
Marci is immature so not a very likeable character, although she does mature toward the end of the book, which gave it some redemption and to provide a happy ending.
*I received my copy through NetGalley.com in exchange for an honest review.
Parts of me felt sympathy for her when it ends in an unexpected way for her but then the other part couldn't help but feel she she deserved the let down when she's old enough to know that relationships with married people is just not the place to find long lasting love. But at the same time I couldn't help saying her exact words "Doug,"..."F$#!.You." Hell yeah! DOUCHE!
So now what? She's then "offered" her dream job and she calls the best friend...for help to move back home. Now we flow back and forth between the past and present and we learn about Doug and Marci's relationship since college through the years. 1/2 through the novel and she's finally let it out with her other best friend Suzanne so she can finally move forward and "stand up again". And thankfully she starts to do just that and she says "yes".
But wait! Doug comes after her...NOOOO! Darn Doug for barging back into her life...Thank goodness for Daddy's speech to his daughters, especially the one that has a habit of running away when things got tough. Does she let him stay or not??? Does she say goodbye to Jake or tell Doug to leave and never come back? Well you got to read it to find out! ;-)
THE MARRIAGE PACT was in my opinion definitely more about Marci and her feelings about love, relationships, marriage, friendships, and family than it is about her relationship with Jake whom she had made a "silly" marriage pact with years ago in college or even the relationship between her and Doug. It's a story of a young woman growing and realizing what's most important.
I recommend this novel to anyone who believes in love, family, and enjoys reading stories of self-discovery.