When Marissa Fuchs posted an elaborate engagement story to her Instagram in June, the lifestyle influencer’s roughly 200,000 followers were swept up in the apparent fairytale romance. Days after the posts went viral, the Atlantic reported in a widely-shared story that, far from a spontaneous romantic gesture, the round-the-world engagement trip which Fuchs portrayed online was a stunt for which she had pitched sponsorship deals to brands months ahead of her fiancée’s “proposal.”
In a bout of precognition, Brooklynite and author Hannah Orenstein wrote a novel with a similar premise months before Fuchs’s engagement debacle took our timelines by storm. In “Love at First Like,” on sale from Atria Books in August, Eliza Roth co-owns a jewelry shop in Brooklyn with her sister Sophie. When Eliza accidentally posts a photo of her bejeweled ring finger to Instagram, her followers assume she’s engaged and go berserk, spreading the pic far and wide — but the misunderstanding proves to be very good for business. To keep the money rolling in, Eliza must maintain the charade and find a stand-in fiancée, setting off a screwball chain of romantic mishaps.
Hannah Orenstein is a senior dating editor at Elite Daily and the author of the 2018 novel “Playing with Matches.” Previously, Orenstein was a writer and editor for Seventeen.com. She lives in Brooklyn.