The Perfect Daughter

DJ Palmer

The Perfect Daughter is a thriller that explores the truth or lies behind a teenage girl’s multiple personality disorder, from D.J. Palmer, the author of The New Husband.

Grace never dreamt she’d visit her teenaged daughter Penny in the locked ward of a decaying state psychiatric hospital, charged with the murder of a stranger. There was not much question of her daughter’s guilt. Police had her fingerprints on the murder weapon and the victim’s blood on her body and clothes. But they didn’t have a motive.

Grace blames herself, because that’s what mothers do—they look at their choices and wonder, what if? But hindsight offers little more than the chance for regret.

None of this was conceivable the day Penny came into her life. Then, it seemed like a miracle. Penny was found abandoned, with a mysterious past, and it felt like fate brought Penny to her, and her husband Arthur. But as she grew, Penny’s actions grew more disturbing, and different “personalities” emerged.

Arthur and Grace took Penny to different psychiatrists, many of whom believed she was putting on a show to help manage her trauma. But Grace didn’t buy it. The personas were too real, too consistent. It had to be a severe multiple personality disorder. One determined psychiatrist, Dr. Mitch McHugh, helped discover someone new inside Penny—a young girl named Abigail. Is this the nameless girl who was abandoned in the park years ago? Mitch thinks Abigail is the key to Penny’s past and to the murder. But as Grace and Mitch dig deeper, they uncover dark and shocking secrets that put all their lives in grave danger. 

-Excerpt taken from Goodreads.

Check Goodreads to see the book’s ratings.

My Opinion

This one sucked me in! I love the psychology behind DID (or dissociative identity disorder). I think the movie Split made this more commonly known- Which by the way is an absolutely terrifying movie purely because James McAvoy was truly incredible. It sends shivers up my spine just thinking about it!

While this book didn’t take it to that extreme, it was definitely fascinating. Penny has multiple personalities and each one is strikingly different. 

The end wasn’t quite the bombshell I wanted it to be but I was impressed with Palmer’s ability to make me continually guess throughout the book. 

Content Summary: Adoption of an abandoned young child, possible child abuse, DID (previously called multiple identity disorder), patients in a lockdown mental health facility, drug addiction, violence. 

Thank you to  St. Martins Press for the amazing box that included so many goodies! And also MacMillan Audio for helping me to sufficiently immerse myself in the story.

The book releases April 20, 2021.

**As an Amazon associate I earn from qualifying purchases. 


  1. I read a book a while back that was pretty similar to this – The Perfect Child by Lucinda Berry and I loved it. This one sounds good too!

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