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Otherwise Engaged

3.20  ·  Rating details ·  932 ratings  ·  133 reviews
Life is sweet for New Yorkers Molly and Gabe: They’re young, in love, and newly engaged.

But when Gabe sells his first novel—a thinly-veiled retelling of his wild love affair with ex-girlfriend Talia—and it becomes a national sensation, Molly can’t help but feel like the third wheel. To make matters worse, Talia reappears in Gabe’s life, eager to capitalize on the book’s su
Hardcover, 304 pages
Published February 26th 2019 by Skyhorse
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Average rating 3.20  · 
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 ·  932 ratings  ·  133 reviews

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MissBecka Gee
Molly was a wonderful character! She was meticulous, paranoid, funny, heartwarming and slightly bananas. I really enjoyed getting to know her and becoming immersed in her whirlwind of a life.
This had a fantastic support of both side characters and stories to keep me intrigued.
Normally a book within a book is not something I enjoy, but here it seemed to work.

Ms. Palmer's writing is infectious and urged me onward with every new page.
I look forward to checking out more of her work!
Thank you NetGall
Dec 17, 2018 rated it it was ok
I struggled to get through this one. I really hated all of the characters and I just didn’t desire to get back inside of their brains so I found myself avoiding reading. This is a story of an insecure woman that makes assumption after assumption about her fiancé and experiences a severe psychological downward spiral and nearly loses everything. I found myself wanting to yell at the main character repeatedly. While I didn’t enjoy the first 80% of the book, I did like the ending and I think there ...more
I tried to read this book a few times before I finally managed to get through it.
Don't get me wrong, the plot is well paced. The writing style is great, it flows well and it's not tiring. The story itself is fairly interesting and intriguing. And the entire concept of a book within a book is quite fun and executed well.
The reason why I couldn't read get into this book are the characters. That's not to say that there are any major issues with them, it's just that I failed to feel a connection to
Feb 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Fun read, while also beautifully written and compelling. Highly recommend!!
Seth Palmer
Feb 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Fun premise. Beautifully written. I tore through it in two sittings to discover what would happen to our protagonist.
Jan 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Oh my gosh. It took me a little while to get into this book - even though the characters were well written, they didn't grab me. The book starts off with this couple who go out camping and then the girl is disappointed that they don't get engaged. Pretty boring so far. But it gets so much more captivating and intense. The characters grew and became real people, and their lives and loves and losses and insanity became real. I couldn't figure out if I wanted to put the book down to disentangle mys ...more
Jul 24, 2019 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Char (1RadReader59)
Dec 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Talk about a storyline that gets into heads of its characters as they go through major meltdowns in their lives.

As the reader, you see their private turmoil as well as sometimes their very public and embarrassing turmoil’s. Relationships are not easy under the ideal of circumstances. But have it go public as in, to the world, is almost impossible.

Molly Stone the go-to girl for HR at her company. When Gabe Dover comes in for an interview for the position, the rings all the bells she is looking
May 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Gabe and Molly are a young couple living the artsy life in New York. Gabe writing his novel, waiting tables at night; Molly at a practical monotonous desk job to pay the bills. Patiently waiting to actually feel like a grown up, mesmerized as their friends marry and get pregnant. When Gabe unexpectedly sells his novel through Molly’s obnoxious co-worker’s agent, their lives are quickly turned upside down. Molly soon learns that The Charms of Dahlia is a fictionalized account of Gabe’s psycho ex- ...more
Dec 30, 2018 rated it liked it
Molly and Gabe have been together for two years, they're on a romantic getaway for their anniversary and he has a surprise for her; there's a beautiful view in a remote clearing, sparkling wine and a love poem - not the proposal she was secretly hoping for.

Back home from their break, Gabriel completes his novel he's been working on throughout their relationship and for the first time Molly is given a copy. It doesn't take long for Molly to realise that 'The Chronicles of Dahlia' was not so vague
Sarah at Sarah's Bookshelves
Mar 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc
Thanks to Skyhorse Publishing for an advanced copy of this book.

Y’all know I’m not normally big on the rom-com style brain candy books…they can easily venture into cheesy for me. But, there have been two over the past few months I’ve actually liked (How to Walk Away and One Day in December) and I can now add Otherwise Engaged to the list! The beginning is a touch cheesy, but then the story turns a corner. The premise is totally intriguing…Palmer’s juxtaposition of excerpts of Gabe’s book with Mo
Feb 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Lindsey J. Palmer takes her heroine, Molly, and puts her through all manner of hijinks and hilarity, desperately hoping that Molly will grow up in the process.

It begins with Molly expecting her longtime boyfriend Gabe to propose to her. He doesn’t. Gabe has a book to finish, one he isn’t too keen on letting Molly read because her previous efforts to provide feedback on his work tended to be more nit picky and critical than constructive. I can’t say I blame Gabe for keeping her from this one.

It t
Susan Peterson
Mar 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
Messy relationships. Complex characters. Compelling story. Honest friendships. Witty dialogue. Heartfelt emotions. All of these elements combine to create this novel about a young woman whose life becomes very unsettled after she becomes engaged. Molly finds it hard to focus on her upcoming wedding when her fiancé signs a book deal—a book about an ex-girlfriend which stirs up all of Molly’s insecurities and doubts. I received this book as a gift.
Jan 10, 2019 rated it it was ok
Shelves: netgalley
Thanks to NG for an ARC. A book within a book, now there is a book that peaks my interest. While I did have problems relating to the characters and felt like there were a few things that were skipped over and/or left out, I give it 2.5 stars because I stayed engaged in the story. The ending was terrible and did not wrap up the book at all, It left me wanting closure, something to close the story with, instead it was empty and lackluster.
Julia | gameofreading
Apr 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: x-2019
3.5 stars - fun, quick read. I always like a book inside a book!
Meredith Schorr
Aug 04, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book and it evoked a lot of feelings. How would I feel if my fiancé wrote a book inspired by an earlier relationship? Would I be jealous? Insecure? Doubt his feelings for me? Yes, I think I would. Even the strongest relationships can be rattled by something like this, especially when you allow your imagination to run away from you. Because of this, I totally sympathized with the main character, Molly, and anxiously read to find out how it all turned out. Molly didn't always ...more
Amanda (Books, Life and Everything Nice)
Thank you to NetGalley, Skyhorse, and Lindsey Palmer for an ARC ebook copy to review. As always, an honest review from me.

- The character of Sam - she’s unsure about life, but she tells it like it is
- It’s a character study
- The storylines with Molly’s mom — so sweet!
- Watching a far from perfect relationship unfold

Love: —

- Gabe’s book — the writing is so cringe worthy
- Doesn’t go very in depth into so many hard hitting topics such as uncertainty in relationships, becoming a mother,
Nicole Altherr
Apr 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed this book! It was so unique, almost like a backwards love story!

When Molly's boyfriend finally proposes, she thinks she has everything she's ever wanted: the guy, the job, the future. Everything feels perfect until her fiancé's debut novel gains popularity and everything that comes along with it..

I loved Palmer's writing style! She somehow got us hooked on not one book, but two! Reading a book within a book was so unique, but added so much to the story. I definitely recommend r
Lindsey Erickson
Jan 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
3.5 stars, but rounding up, as I did enjoy this book. I found myself very conflicted throughout on how the main characters feelings and reactions to her fiancés “fictional” novel impacted her. Plus, the ending continues to make you think.
Feb 25, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: edelweiss
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathleen Gray
Feb 24, 2019 rated it really liked it
What would you do if your boyfriend wrote an explicit novel about his relationship with his ex? AND if it then became a best seller? That's what happens to Molly when Gabe's book about Talia is published. Molly spins and spins and then she implodes. How much you like this will depend on how willing you are to go with it. There were points when I just wanted to tell her to grow up. That, however, is not always how we react when someone we love hurts us. Thanks to Edelweiss for the ARC. It's a fas ...more
Feb 27, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Such a wonderful book, I finished it in just two days! As someone who recently went through a whirlwind engagement and marriage, I love how the author captured the highs and lows of a modern day engagement. This was a really fun read, with an incredibly sweet, touching, and unexpected ending.
Judy Churchill
Dec 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
This book had a slow start for me. It took me awhile to warm up to the characters. It’s a debut novel with tremendous insight into relationships and what makes them work. By the end of the book I hated to say goodbye.
Jul 16, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition

This is a charming book. At turns funny, deep, painful, real. I liked the characters very much, and found the plot to be totally over the top and yet believable.
Janilyn Kocher
Dec 22, 2018 rated it liked it
I wanted to like this book from the synopsis, however it missed the mark for me. I just couldn't engage with any of the characters and found myself skimming over chunks of each chapter. This book was just a miss for me. Thanks to NetGalley for the ARC. ...more
Melissa Thomas
Dec 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Typical chic lit....but that’s not a bad thing. The ending isn’t necessarily typical and I really liked that. It’s easy to tell where this book is heading but it’s a a light, fun read. Thanks NetGalley for the ARC!
Nov 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Really, really enjoyed this book! It was cute, relatable, and also pretty realistic portrait of relationships and friendships.

Molly is 30 years old and has been in a long-term relationship with her aspiring writer boyfriend, Gabe. She's successful at her job as an HR Recruiting Manager at a branding company while her boyfriend works in a restaurant while writing his novel. Early on in the novel, the two get engaged, and it seems like everything is coming up roses for Molly and Gabe -- that is,
Kaitlyn Joy
Apr 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019-books, netgalley
I received an Advanced Review Copy of Otherwise Engaged from the Publisher Skyhorse Publishing through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

What It’s About: This book tells the story of a young newly engaged couple, where the boy, Gabe, has just written an explosive new book (along the lines of 50 Shades) about his former girlfriend, and follows Molly, the woman, trying to deal with the blow this has on not only her life and relationship but her self-esteem.

What I Loved: I connected with
Laura Yamin
Nov 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a free ARC from Netgalley in exchange of an honest review. My opinions are my own.

This is the story of Molly and Gabe who recently got engaged. Here is the thing Gabe is an aspiring author who wrote a book loosely based on his past relationship.

He presents the book to his agent and he loves it. There is a bidding war for the book. Needless to say the book is a success which leaves Molly in a weird situation. She is happy for Gabe and his success however she feels uncomfortable by t
Mar 28, 2019 rated it it was ok
The blurb makes this book seem like a romantic comedy: Molly and Gabe have been together for 2 years and just got engaged. It should be the happiest time of their lives, but Gabe also just sold his first novel...which is all about his ex-girlfriend who is now suddenly back in the picture. Can they make it past these bumps in the road to a happily ever after?

What this book is REALLY about: a woman who has no idea who she is or what she wants out of life who has a job she got by chance and doesn't
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Lindsey J. Palmer is a writer, editor, and educator. She worked in the magazine industry for many years, most recently as Features Editor at Self, and previously at Redbook and Glamour. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, she earned a Master of Arts in English Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and taught English at a Manhattan public school for several years. Nowadays ...more

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67 likes · 25 comments
“I think of Gabe writing a 300-page tribute to his ex-girlfriend, which will soon be published for all the world to read. I think of Talia, who is apparently back in the picture, or maybe has been in it all along. And Charlie, trying his darnedest to be back in the picture, too, as usual knowing exactly where my tender spots are to probe at. And me, falling for the fantasy that a wedding dress can be some kind of chrysalis, metamorphosing me from a regular person with all my regular person problems into a beautiful butterfly, fit to fly away from it all. How naive I am, how stupid. ” 0 likes
“He cracks a copy's spine to show me the dedication: "Mollymoo, this is for you." I feel the same welling up that I feel whenever Gabe signs a card this way or whispers the nickname in my ear. I snatch the book away to examine it further. But its weight in my hands reminds me that this isn't some private love note; it's a public declaration, the opener to a story that's all about Gabe's ex-girlfriend. In what way is this "for me"? How is it a gift? And what will Talia think when she reads the dedication? How about everyone else?” 0 likes
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