cover image The Dating Plan

The Dating Plan

Sara Desai. Berkley, $16 trade paper (352p) ISBN 978-0-593-10058-5

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. [em]Agent: Laura Bradford, Bradford Literary. (Feb.) [/em]