Title: My Darling Daughter
Author: J.P. Delaney
Genre: Mystery, Thriller, Suspense
First published: September 15th 2022
Publisher: Quercus
Finished reading: September 5th 2022
Pages: 361

“And the trouble with fantasies is that, at some point, they collide with reality and everything turns to shit.”

*** A copy of this book was kindly provided to me by Netgalley and Quercus in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***

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I’ve read and enjoyed J.P. Delaney‘s work before, so of course I couldn’t resist the invitation to read his newest story My Darling Daughter. It’s true that I’ve been mostly staying away from more domestic focused psychological thrillers in recent months, but there was just something about this story that had me fully intrigued. And what a story it ended up being! It’s been a while I’ve had a character THIS manipulative and cunning, and she is a minor at that. My Darling Daughter turned out to be a compelling and chilling domestic thriller with a cast of characters I won’t soon forget.

There is no doubt that My Darling Daugher focuses a lot on domestic life, adoption and family in general. I was expecting more of a psychological thriller approach; domestic thrillers don’t tend to work all that well for me at the moment, and a little warning would have been appreciated. That said, between the engaging writing style, short chapters and lots of secrets, twists and suspense, the pace never slowed down and I finished this story in less than a day. There is something strangely addictive about seeing everything escalate, knowing that things are bound to go horribly wrong sooner than later… And you keep wondering just how far Anna will take things and what she will do next.

My Darling Daughter uses a multiple POV structure, and this makes it really easy to both keep things from us readers and give little hints about a possible future and/or escalation. The story itself is mostly character driven, and while they were not exactly likeable, the character development was well done and thorough. The characters all seemed to have their secrets and motives for not letting the truth come out; the unreliable narrator element used to keep you doubting what is the truth and which parts are lies. I never guessed the full scope of it all, although I did get some of the details right… But the journey itself was more than satisfying, and it ended up being a very compelling and almost uncomfortable read.

If you like your domestic thrillers on the dark side, riddled with secrets and lies and have an extremely manipulative character to boot, My Darling Daughter will be the perfect read for you. It will be hard to stop reading once things start escalating!


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