Review: Playing Nice by J. P. Delaney


Release date: July 28, 2020

Publisher: Ballantine

Genre: Mystery/Thriller


Before. . . .

Pete Riley answers the door one morning and lets in a parent’s worst nightmare. On his doorstep is Miles Lambert, a stranger who breaks the devastating news that Pete’s son, Theo, isn’t actually his son–he is the Lamberts’, switched at birth by an understaffed hospital while their real son was sent home with Miles and his wife, Lucy. For Pete, his partner Maddie, and the little boy they’ve been raising for the past two years, life will never be the same again.

The two families, reeling from the shock, take comfort in shared good intentions, eagerly entwining their very different lives in the hope of becoming one unconventional modern family. But a plan to sue the hospital triggers an official investigation that unearths some disturbing questions about the night their children were switched. How much can they trust the other parents–or even each other? What secrets are hidden behind the Lamberts’ glossy front door? Stretched to the breaking point, Pete and Maddie discover they will each stop at nothing to keep their family safe.

They are done playing nice. 


Talk about a unique premise! I mean it’s pretty out there right? But technically it could happen even it seems outrageous and I’m always looking for something unique, especially in a thriller. I can’t even imagine someone showing up at my front door and claiming one of my kids was switched at birth, insane! And really that’s just the tip of the iceberg here…

This flips back and forth between Pete and his partner Maddie and immediately I struggled a little with how they reacted to Miles claims about their son, Theo. They were all a little too lackadaisical and naive about working together for the children, etc and I remember thinking no way in hell would I be that easygoing. It didn’t really bother me, just made me shake my head and roll my eyes a little because you totally know that’s the wrong approach. Besides that super minor complaint I absolutely loved every second of this one, it was twisty without being silly, it was gripping and surprising and it was paced perfectly. Things get delicious dark and diabolical in the end and it was a mad dash to the finish for me as I couldn’t wait to see how it all played out in the end. I find this authors books to be polarizing, people either love them or hate them and I’m happy this time around I loved it!

Overall rating: 5/5

Thanks to the publisher for my review copy.

9 thoughts on “Review: Playing Nice by J. P. Delaney

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