book cover of The Playground
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The Playground

(2019)
A novel by

 
 
"Beautifully written and suffused with dread. Jane Shemilt's domestic settings are seductively vivid, and the final outcome is profoundly shocking and terrifying." — Gilly Macmillan, New York Times bestselling author of The Nanny

Big Little Lies meets Lord of The Flies in this electrifyingly twisty psychological thriller, follow-up to Jane Shemilt’s breakout debut The Daughter.

Over the course of a long, hot summer in London, the lives of three very different married couples collide when their children join the same tutoring circle, resulting in illicit relationships, shocking violence, and unimaginable fallout.

There’s Eve, a bougie earth mother with a well-stocked trust fund; she has three little ones, a blue-collar husband and is obsessed with her Instagrammable recipes and lifestyle. And Melissa, a successful interior designer whose casually cruel banker husband is careful not to leave visible bruises; she curates her perfectly thin body so closely she misses everything their teenage daughter is hiding. Then there’s Grace, a young Zimbabwean immigrant, who lives in high-rise housing project with her two children and their English father Martin, an award-winning but chronically broke novelist; she does far more for her family than she should have to.

As the weeks go by, the couples become very close; there are barbecues, garden parties, a holiday at a country villa in Greece. Resentments flare. An affair begins. Unnoticed, the children run wild. The couples are busily watching each other, so distracted and self-absorbed that they forget to watch their children. No one sees the five children at their secret games or realize how much their family dynamics are changing until tragedy strikes.

The story twists and then twists again while the three families desperately search for answers. It’s only as they begin to unravel the truth of what happened over the summer that they realize evil has crept quietly into their world.

But has this knowledge come too late?

"Countless psychological thrillers get compared to Big Little Lies; Shelmilt's is the real deal."  — People

Genre: Mystery

Praise for this book

"BRILLIANT, and frighteningly credible, partly because the characters are so beautifully realized. Exquisitely written, utterly gripping and almost unbearably tense—you'll be thinking about it long after you read the final page." - Lucy Foley

"Beautifully written and suffused with dread. Jane Shemilt's domestic settings are seductively vivid, and the final outcome is profoundly shocking and terrifying." - Gilly MacMillan


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Used availability for Jane Shemilt's The Playground

Hardback Editions

December 2019 : USA Hardback
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Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 0-06-295217-X / 978-0-06-295217-2 (USA edition)
Publisher: William Morrow
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Paperback Editions

December 2019 : USA Paperback
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Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 0-06-294473-8 / 978-0-06-294473-3 (USA edition)
Publisher: HarperLuxe
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


December 2019 : USA Paperback
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Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 0-06-293942-4 / 978-0-06-293942-5 (USA edition)
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


Audio Editions

December 2019 : Audio CD
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Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 1-09-402725-1 / 978-1-09-402725-8
Publisher: HarperCollins B and Blackstone Publishing
Availability: Amazon   Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


December 2019 : Audio CD
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Title: The Playground: Library Edition
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 1-09-402724-3 / 978-1-09-402724-1
Publisher: Blackstone Pub
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA   


December 2019 : MP3 CD
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Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
ISBN: 1-09-402726-X / 978-1-09-402726-5
Publisher: HarperCollins B and Blackstone Publishing
Availability: Amazon UK   Amazon CA   Amazon AU   


December 2019 : USA Audio edition
thumb

Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
Publisher: HarperAudio
Availability: Amazon   


Kindle Editions

December 2019 : USA, Canada Kindle edition
thumb

Title: The Playground: A Novel
Author(s): Jane Shemilt
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Availability: Amazon   Amazon CA