The Missing Marriage by Sarah May

Reviewed by Emma Hagestadt

The versatile and talented novelist Sarah May has never stood still. She first burst onto the literary scene with a bold futuristic debut, The Nudist Colony (1999). Since then her work has included historical fiction, international political satire and subversive domestic dramas. Set in the coastal badlands of the chilly north east, The Missing Marriage is something different again - a love story told as a missing-person investigation. Childhood sweethearts Byran and Laura have been married for 15 years when Bryan goes missing at sea. What puzzles the investigating officer, Inspector Laviolette, is why his abandoned wife appears more excited than worried. The novel probes childhood's darker secrets, and the way that "love hangs on strange threads."