Review: The One by John Marrs (Blog Tour)

This review is part of The One blog tour.

The One by John Marrs

The One by John Marrs

Title: The One
Author: John Marrs
Genre: Romance, Thriller
Source: The publisher
Publisher: Del Rey (4th May 2017, 26th January 2017 in ebook)

How far would you go to find THE ONE?

One simple mouth swab is all it takes. A quick DNA test to find your perfect partner – the one you’re genetically made for.

A decade after scientists discover everyone has a gene they share with just one other person, millions have taken the test, desperate to find true love. Now, five more people meet their Match. But even soul mates have secrets. And some are more shocking – and deadlier – than others…

A psychological thriller with a difference, this is a truly unique novel which is guaranteed to keep you on the edge of your seat.

(Blurb taken from

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4 stars)

The premise of John Marrs’s book THE ONE is an intriguing one – if there was a test you could take to find your perfect match, would you take it? In THE ONE we follow the stories of five people who submit their DNA, and find their perfect partner. Everyone has secrets they keep. All five stories are different, but linked through them using Match Your DNA to find the one person they are genetically made for. From there, their stories diverge. In THE ONE John Marrs tells a psychological thriller, peppered with romance, that will keep you turning the pages.

THE ONE exceeded my expectations. Going into this book I was really intrigued by the idea that a DNA test could be used to find your soulmate. I thought it was a really unique take on the idea of soulmates, especially with the fact that the book is both a romance and a thriller. But for me Marrs pulled it off; I found the story entertaining and believable. It helped that THE ONE isn’t just the story of one person, but of five people and they all tell their own stories. I also thought the change of title from A THOUSAND SMALL EXPLOSIONS to THE ONE worked well for the book, as it is more memorable now.

The narration of THE ONE is split between the five main characters; they each narrate their own stories, and so Marrs gives them their own chapters. I thought this style works well to keep track of what is going on, as Marrs keeps the narrators in the same order so you know who is going to be next. It also serves to keep the tension within the story up, as this naturally breaks the flow of the narrative turning the story into a page-turner. I thought that Marrs did a brilliant job with the chapter length – I didn’t feel that any of them were too long, or too short – and the different stories felt well balanced.

Secrets lie at the heart of THE ONE, as the blurb hints, so it’s actually quite hard to talk about the plot the book without giving anything away. For me, the joy of THE ONE was going into it blind and watching events unfold with only the blurb to go on. I will say that I did enjoy the five separate storylines and the fact that they aren’t really linked apart from the fact that they took the test to match their DNA. I’m not really science minded, but I thought the science behind the DNA test when mentioned sounded plausible. And, I think Marrs did a good job in mixing the thriller and romance genres together in this book.

If you’re not a fan of romance, don’t let that aspect of the book put you off: THE ONE is about much more than the quest to find your soulmate. THE ONE is a book that will stay with you once you reach the end. Marrs has created a good psychological thriller that will keep you turning the pages. If you are looking for a unique read, then THE ONE is well worth checking out.

Meet the author…

John Marrs is a freelance journalist based in London, England, who has spent the last 20 years interviewing celebrities from the world of television, film and music for national newspapers and magazines.

He has written for publications including The Guardian’s Guide and Guardian Online; OK! Magazine; Total Film; Empire; Q; GT; The Independent; Star; Reveal; Company; Daily Star and News of the World’s Sunday Magazine.

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