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The Dating Plan
Cover of The Dating Plan
The Dating Plan
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A Marie Claire Book Club Pick!
Even with a step-by-step plan, these fake fiancés might accidentally fall for each other in this hilarious, heartfelt
romantic comedy from the author of The Marriage Game.
Daisy Patel is a software engineer who understands lists and logic better than bosses and boyfriends. With her life all planned out, and no interest in love, the one thing she can't give her family is the marriage they expect. Left with few options, she asks her childhood crush to be her decoy fiancé.
Liam Murphy is a venture capitalist with something to prove. When he learns that his inheritance is contingent on being married, he realizes his best friend's little sister has the perfect solution to his problem. A marriage of convenience will get Daisy's matchmaking relatives off her back and fulfill the terms of his late grandfather's will. If only he hadn’t broken her tender teenage heart nine years ago…
Sparks fly when Daisy and Liam go on a series of dates to legitimize their fake relationship. Too late, they realize that very little is convenient about their arrangement. History and chemistry aren't about to follow the rules of this engagement.
A Marie Claire Book Club Pick!
Even with a step-by-step plan, these fake fiancés might accidentally fall for each other in this hilarious, heartfelt
romantic comedy from the author of The Marriage Game.
Daisy Patel is a software engineer who understands lists and logic better than bosses and boyfriends. With her life all planned out, and no interest in love, the one thing she can't give her family is the marriage they expect. Left with few options, she asks her childhood crush to be her decoy fiancé.
Liam Murphy is a venture capitalist with something to prove. When he learns that his inheritance is contingent on being married, he realizes his best friend's little sister has the perfect solution to his problem. A marriage of convenience will get Daisy's matchmaking relatives off her back and fulfill the terms of his late grandfather's will. If only he hadn’t broken her tender teenage heart nine years ago…
Sparks fly when Daisy and Liam go on a series of dates to legitimize their fake relationship. Too late, they realize that very little is convenient about their arrangement. History and chemistry aren't about to follow the rules of this engagement.
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    Daisy Patel had no issues with besotted lovers hiding away in a toilet cubicle for a little covert tongue gymnastics. For the most part, technology conferences were stressful and boring, and if someone could find a little lip loving between networking, speakers, and seminars, she didn't begrudge them their happiness.

    In this case, however, the gold medal winner of the twist 'n' tangle in the women's restroom at the Oakland Convention Center happened to be her ex-boyfriend, Orson Fisk.

    And the woman in his arms was her former boss, Madison Montgomery, CEO of Activize LLC.

    "Ahem." Her attempt to draw their attention fell on deaf ears. Or maybe they didn't care. Maybe Orson had been bespelled, and when he was finally released from Madison's clutches, he would realize he'd made a mistake breaking up with a neurotic software engineer and her pakora-loving pup. Daisy and Max came as a package; dog haters be warned.

    Curiously numb at the sight of her ex wrapped around her old boss like the most tenacious of invasive species, Daisy slammed a quarter into the disposable menstrual product dispenser.

    She'd been under no illusions when Orson had asked her out after they'd met in a Developer Week hack-a-thon in Oakland, California. Clearly he was desperate for a hookup. After all, not many men were interested in a woman who lived by plans and quantifiable results and could do one compile a day in C++ in a POSIX environment with zero errors. They wanted the prom queens, not the class valedictorians; the women who wielded fashion as a weapon, and not a shield. So she'd been thrown off her Manic Pixie Dream Girl game when Orson had called after their one-night stand and asked her out again.

    Thirty-five going on sixty-five, devoid of any body fat, and possessing a wispy goatee, Orson had introduced her to long walks, black coffee, art house films, slow jazz, gourmet cooking, and the benefits of intellectual over physical relationships. They worked in the same field, attended the same conferences, and shared the same interests in the online world. It should have been perfect. And yet she'd never once, in the four weeks they'd been seeing each other-making it the longest relationship in her life-thought of introducing him to her family. Serious relationships were not in a life plan that involved working hard, looking after her dad, and growing old alone in the house where she'd been born.

    Orson tugged on Madison's blouse, tearing the top button to reveal the secret treasures of a woman seriously lacking in discretion. There was nothing intellectual about his frenzied pawing. If Daisy had known tearing off clothes was one of Orson's skills, she might have put a ring on it right away. But she'd been plagued with doubt. Why didn't she feel the flutters in her chest that were supposedly indicative of love? Where were the birds that were supposed to be tweeting around her head? Did she have some kind of chemical imbalance, or was something else wrong? Only when she caught Orson and Madison doing the nasty in Madison's office late one evening did she finally feel something.

    Relief.

    As she had always suspected, she was meant to be alone.

    Turning the crank as slowly as possible to maximize the decibel level of menstrual product release, she glanced over again at Orson and Madison pawing at each other like horny teenagers. She should make a quick exit before she said something awkward that would make the situation infinitely worse. Her tendency to blurt out whatever was on her mind had gotten her into trouble too many times. She was happiest alone...

About the Author-
  • Sara Desai has been a lawyer, a radio DJ, a historian, a bouncer, and a librarian. She lives on Vancouver Island with her husband and three children.
Reviews-
  • Publisher's Weekly

    Starred review from December 21, 2020
    Desai (The Marriage Game) dazzles with this funny, convincing take on the fake relationship trope. Self-described “neurotic software engineer” Daisy Patel just walked in on her ex-boyfriend and former boss having sex, her company’s going under, and her family is pressuring her to get married. So a literal run-in with Liam Murphy, the family friend turned high school crush who stood Daisy up for prom, is the last thing she needs. The death of his grandfather has brought rebel-without-a-cause Liam home to San Francisco. Now, the chance to inherit the family distillery offers the opportunity to reinvent his family’s complicated legacy. But to inherit, he’ll need to marry before his next birthday. So Liam proposes a marriage of convenience to Daisy: he’ll get the distillery and Daisy’s family will stop matchmaking. Daisy agrees, but only if there’s a “dating plan” to guide them every step of the way. But with the desire between them mounting—and the truth of why Liam stood Daisy up finally revealed—how long can things stay perfectly planned out and pretend? Geek-chic Daisy makes an endearing heroine, and the dysfunctional Murphy family provides believable tension. Desai’s fans will be thrilled to reconnect with the eccentric Patels and new readers will be hooked. This is a gem. Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary.

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The Dating Plan
Sara Desai
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