What if you found out that your family isn’t yours at all? How far would you go to protect them? A gripping new psychological thriller from the bestselling author of The Girl Before. . . .
“[JP] Delaney takes domestic suspense beyond its comfort zone.”—Marilyn Stasio, The New York Times Book Review
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.
A nightmarish scenario drives this gripping psychological thriller from bestseller Delaney (The Perfect Wife). Freelance journalist Pete Riley, a stay-at-home dad, and his partner, Maddie Wilson, who works in advertising, live in Willesden Green, a middle-class London neighborhood, with their two-year-old son, Theo. One afternoon, Miles Lambert arrives at Pete's door and tells him, "Theo isn't your son. He's mine." Miles goes on to explain that their children were switched soon after birth, and the Lamberts are suing the hospital. Pete and Maddie agree to attempt an amicable solution and meet with Miles and his wife at their posh home in Highgate. But cruel, obsessive Miles files for custody of both children, and he's out to win at all costs. Everyone has secrets, and everyone has made mistakes that can be magnified in a courtroom battle. Then people connected with the case begin to die. Delaney skillfully gets inside his lead characters in alternating chapters narrated by Pete and by Maddie. Some genuinely surprising twists reveal just how far a parent will go for the sake of a child. This is domestic suspense at its most unsettling.
Suspenseful and unpredictable
Well written, with the signature twists and turns of a J.P. Delaney novel. Despite a rather prudish, and perhaps intentionally obtuse, treatment of women’s porn-viewing habits (or implied lack there of) and a prudish treatment of porn and alcohol consumption in general, Delaney, as always, doesn’t pull any punches and his characters are fearlessly written.
Awake all night
Really really gripping
Enjoyed this book but definitely took a while to get into.