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Wife 22 (2012)

Alice Buckle fears she has become more roommates than lovers with her husband William when she agrees to do an anonymous online survey about their 20-year marriage. The survey delves into how they met - he was her boss and was dating another colleague; his irritations - pee on the bathroom floor and jeans inside-out in the laundry basket; and the effects of parenthood - she fears her daughter Hannah has an eating disorder and thinks son Peter is gay. And soon the self-deprecating Wife 22 - as she is known - finds it easier opening up to a stranger - her Researcher 101 - than communicating with her own husband. This takes an unusual writing format, including survey answers (the questions are at the back of the book); Google searches, Facebook updates and play scripts of events. My only disappointment was working out less than halfway through the reference that gives away the ending. But this is still a terrific book, with a protagonist you'll feel like friending on Facebook. A very promising debut.

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