Little Friends

“Domestic noir at its best.” - Suzy K Quinn

Back to Books
Little Friends – Jane Shemilt
  • USA title – The Playground
  • 2020 - Penguin
  • ISBN-10: 0718180917
  • ISBN-13: 978-0718180911

Their children are friends first. They hit it off immediately, as kids do. And so the parents are forced to get to know each other. Three wildly different couples. Three marriages, floundering.

There are barbecues, dinner parties, a holiday in Greece. An affair begins, resentments flare, and despite it all the three women become closer.

Unnoticed their children run wild. The couples are so busy watching each other that they forget to watch their children. Until tragedy strikes.

But the summer won’t be over until our story twists, and twists again, while three families search desperately for answers. Because while they have been looking the other way, evil has crept into their safe little world and every parent’s biggest nightmare is about to come true…

Little Friends – Jane Shemilt

“Extremely clever, readable and elegant ... perfect for fans of Big Little Lies. Domestic noir at its best.”

Suzy K Quinn, bestselling author of Don't Tell Teacher

“Twisty and unexpected, The Playground’s dark take on suburbia will have parents hugging their children just a bit tighter.”

Sarah Gelman, Amazon Book Review

“Beautifully written and suffused with dread.”

Gilly Macmillan, best-selling author of The Nanny

“Brilliant, and frighteningly credible.”

Lucy Foley, best-selling author of The Hunting Party

“Compelling and twisted, I gulped it down.”

Sarah Vaughan, best-selling author of Anatomy of a Scandal

“Beautifully written ... Jane Shemilt has a talent for taking you into her world.”

Jane Corry, best-selling author of I looked Away

“The combination of the slow drip of tension throughout and the children skipping off together into the woods had my heart in my throat. Intelligent, compelling and deeply unsettling. My kind of book!”

Ali Land, best-selling author of Good Me Bad Me

“Countless psychological thrillers get compared to Big Little Lies, Shemilt's is the real deal.”

People Magazine

“I loved Little Friends by Jane Shemilt. Such a clever, beautiful written read that was tense and thrilling throughout with an ending that gave me goosebumps. Highly recommended.”

Claire Douglas, best-selling author of Then She Vanishes

International Editions

UK (C'wealth) Penguin – Michael Joseph
USA HarperCollins – William Morrow (as The Playground)
Italy Newton Compton

Alternative Covers

Congratulations to all the winners and shortlistees; this makes such inspiring and joyful reading.

Huge, huge congratulations @CandiceC_W on this stunning win and of course, on your stunning book.

Loved being part of this- so many of many great ideas come out of the best crime dramas. I wait, pen in hand to pounce on them.