I have one, with the Apex DCEAK setup in it. I like it.
I am not as accurate with it as my favorite 1911, but am plenty accurate for self-defense. A 4" group at 15 yards vs a 2.5" group at 15 yards is well within my personal standard for 'save my butt' accuracy.
I am completely comfortable with it as a nightstand gun, or an open carry [if it were legal here] gun for me. I have NO qualms about its reliability.
I liked it better than the Glock for two major reasons: grip angle and grip dimensions. The M&P is closer to the 1911 or Hi Power grip angle, which I am used to, and the Glock feels wrong in my hand. Also, I find the small backstrap makes it more comfortable and easier to control/handle than the Glock Gen 3. I am in california, so I can't get the Gen 4 glocks.
Overall, it is one of my 'keepers'. I am more accurate with it than I was with the Sig P220 or H&K USP.45 compact [both of which I sold] by at least 2" better group sizes at 7 yards.
Is it a 1911? No. Or it would be a M&P 1911. Is it perfect? I doubt it. What is perfect? Is it reliable? In my experience: yes. Is it accurate? Enough for self-defense for me. For bulls eye competition at 50 yards? Probably not. Then there is the more subjective: How does it feel in my hand, how does the trigger feel to me, now do I like the look? Those last three are something everyone has to decide for themselves.
Would I recommend it? Yes. With the qualification that the purchaser feel one and the trigger BEFORE buying it. Sight-Unseen? I don't recommend anyone buy a self-defense gun that they've never held in their hands [model, that is]. If you have felt a 1911 and liked it you could order any makers' 1911 and probably be happy. If you've never felt it you should try it out.