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The Dating Plan by Sara Desai

The Dating Plan

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by Sara Desai

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Quick take

Can two people become fake-engaged, finally please their families, and feel fulfilled—without falling in love? Well...

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  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Happy


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_LOL


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_SalaciousPeach


  • Illustrated icon, Icon_Tech

    Tech world


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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Get an early look from the first pages of The Dating Plan.
The Dating Plan


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—she’d caught a glimpse of them in the mirror before they’d closed the stall door—Daisy slid 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.

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Why I love it

I fell in love with the romance genre long before I started writing. From the much needed guarantee of a happily ever after, to the butterfly-inducing first kisses, I could lose myself in the pages of romance fiction. Sara Desai’s The Dating Plan is a masterclass on everything wonderful about this genre and includes some of its most popular tropes, like marriages of convenience and enemies-to-lovers plotlines. However, it’s everything that takes place between these tropes where Desai really creates magic.

Daisy Patel believes in logic over love and Liam Murphy is too busy proving he’s nothing like his father to settle into a relationship. But when they crash into each other—literally—at a tech conference, ten years after he ghosted her at high school prom, they put aside their old grudges and a dating plan is born… Daisy needs a way to get her well-meaning, marriage-obsessed Aunties off of her back and Liam needs a wife in order to get his inheritance. They both agree a marriage of convenience is the answer to their problems. With promises of no feelings and definitely no touching, what could possibly go wrong?

The Dating Plan had me laughing from the first page and kept me smiling until the very end, yet Desai doesn’t skip over the hard stuff. This clever romance is also about family—from a close-knit family who can teeter on overbearing to a dysfunctionally distant family who favors secrets over affection. Desai takes us on a journey of growth and healing, guiding us to a happily ever after that doesn’t just feel believable, but deserved and satisfying.

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Member ratings (28,736)

  • Abbie G.

    Lafayette, IN

    A classic romance novel and I loved every minute of it!! It made me laugh and put a smile on my face! Pretty predicable, but what romance isn’t? I love Daisy and Liam’s love story! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  • Ashley C.

    Buffalo, NY

    ❤️❤️ this book. Read it in one sitting. Daisy finds herself and love, but separately and that is my favorite kind of romance novel. So happy things worked out for her and she believes in herself now!!

  • Stephanie M.

    Fryeburg , ME

    This was such a cute second chance love story! I loved how Dasiy and Liam personalities balance each other out and they were able to overcome their insecurities together. This was a great romcom!

  • Maki M.

    Celebration , FL

    At first this story was a little hard for me to get into, but once I got into it I didn’t want to put it down. It was a refreshing take on a love story and didn’t feel like every other love story does

  • Marisa S.

    East meadow, NY

    I loved the story, how each character had their own issues to work through to better themselves, how the cultures were represented, and it all tied together with a happy ending. A quick, fun read! 5⭐️

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