The Dating Plan by Sara Desai

The Dating Plan: a funny banter of love and romance

The Dating Plan by Sara Desai is a sequel to her first novel The Marriage Game. Published by Penguin Random House, the novel is a light, funny and romance story of Daisy Patel, a software engineer and Liam Murphy.

The Dating Plan starts with a description of Daisy’s professional life and her relationship with her childhood sweetheart Liam Murphy. Liam was Daisy’s brother Sanjay’s best buddy. Things get worse between Liam and Daisy as Liam stood her up at the prom night. That was the last straw. Humiliated Daisy cuts off her relationship with Liam.

After 8 years of pain and agony and no contact with Liam, Daisy suddenly runs into him one day. It appears Liam still hasn’t forgotten Daisy and likewise.

Hence, starts a game- a dating plan with rules and boundaries that are transgressed without a conscience. Passion takes over morals and values. The steamy descriptions of romance and the intensity of love excite the reader but of course not without being alarmed at what the repercussions could be like!

The novel takes an interesting twist as Daisy and Liam get involved in a fake relationship to escape the marriage proposals her aunties and father inundate her with. The fake relationship very much becomes real.

Liam needs to get married in order to inherit his father’s distillery and Daisy to avoid the marriage proposals. Both suit each other’s needs and get involved in a relationship of self-interest.

The novel takes the reader through a series of dates that make the relationship between the two genuine in the eyes of the public. Although the theme is not novel, the way it is dealt with wins the heart of the reader. Tired of reading boring and heavy books, The Dating Plan comes as a good comic relief. A mix of tragedy and comedy and love and pain, the novel is a thorough entertainment.

What happens at the end? Do Daisy and Liam finally get married? Are Daisy and Liam actually serious about their relationship or is it just limited to carnal pleasure? Is Nadal Patel able to forgive Liam for walking out on their family or will he accept Liam’s love and commitment for his daughter Daisy? Read the novel to find out!

The novel is a ravishing portrayal of love and affection and the reader finds it hard to put the book down. The storyline is realistic and the reader can relate to it. On the whole a great book.

Beenish Mahmood has a double Master's in English Literature with almost a decade of experience in magazine journalism. She is passionate about South Asian Fiction and environmental issues. She can be reached through email at