Seeing You by Michelle Lynn
Todd’s my next-door neighbor—an up-and-coming chef ready to make his mark on the world. His dreams are bold and limitless, his drive even more so.
He offers me a favor, one that I can’t refuse … only there are strings attached.
Amelia’s my next-door neighbor—a talented photographer waiting for her big break.
Her dreams are authentic and intense, her art even more so.
I made her an offer and she accepted … but I asked for something in return.
Two favors meant to make our dreams come true. Our careers were supposed to change, not our friendship. Success was the ultimate goal … until we saw each other in a different light.
“Yeah. I was thinking…since he’s definitely into you—”
Her head springs my way. “You think he’s into me?” she interrupts. Her eyes open wide in surprise.
Now, she’s perked up.
A small smile creeps up the corners of her mouth, and she shakes her head in disbelief.
“I think he was just being a nice boss.” She focuses down and I wonder what’s going on in that head of hers. I sensed her low self-esteem a few times, but she usually smiles through it—at least in front of me.
“Trust me, Noodle. He’s interested.”
“So, I was thinking that you could keep him distracted and get him to go out—at least, out of the kitchen.”
“What?” She stops, and hurt fills her eyes before confusion sets in. “You trying to whore me out or something?”
Shit. I should have led into that easier. Slower, for sure.
A deep chuckle pours out of me. “No.” I attempt to calm my humor down. “I’m not asking you to screw him. Just flirt a little. Keep him out of the kitchen. You might even like him.”
“Is this a stipulation of you getting me the job?” She crosses her arms over her chest and juts out her hip.
She’s oddly cute when she’s mad and damn—those tits.
“No. I already got you the job. I was thinking this would be more of a thank-you gesture.” My shoulders lift.
She inhales a deep breath. “How about just the ‘nightcap’?” She puts nightcap in air quotes.
“I’ll buy the nightcap. Just put yourself out there, and see if he bites.”
This might be getting worse instead of better.
“Seriously, Todd, you are demented.”
She shakes her head and steadily proceeds toward the subway.
I jog to catch up to her. “Hold up.”
I grip her arm, but she yanks it out of my grasp.
“I’m sorry. It’s just that I want to find investors for my own place. He’s always there, never letting me showcase any of my dishes. I’ve tried to go through the chain, asking him to let me create a special here or there, but he’s refused me every time.” I hold her vision with mine until the corners of her lips turn. “Forget I asked.” My shoulders deflate as I realize it was a dick move. I’ve officially lost it. My desperation is definitely clouding my judgment.
I stop. A warm feeling spurs in my stomach from her ability to forgive me so easily.
I follow her to the top of the subway stairs.
“I saw how he was looking at you in the kitchen, and I just thought it could be good for both of us.”
She giggles and shoves me. “So, you thought, ’yeah, I’ll whore Lia out’.”
“Actually, I thought, ‘I’ll whore Noodle out’.”
Her hand reaches out to shove me again, but I grab ahold of it and pull her in to me. A strawberry scent floats from her hair. This is the first time I’ve hugged her, and from her limp arms, I’m thinking I’ve made another dumbass move by initiating contact.
She laughs into my sweatshirt and steps back. “You’re a rare duck, you know that?” She jogs down the subway steps.
“More like a lone duck,” I mumble behind her.
★✩★✩★ 5 – Friends to Lovers and all the Emotion Involved – Stars ★✩★✩★
~this review MAY CONTAIN minor spoilers~
She was concerned about me and what was wrong with me. How was I supposed to tell her it was her?
I've lived with regret after regret my whole life-like crappy things I did, only to wish I could take them back later. I'm done with that. I'm done with that pit-of-my-stomach guilt that overtakes me. That's why I have to remember my promise. I'll never take something that shouldn't be mine. I'll never, ever allow myself to fully care about anyone.
This isn't my first Michelle Lynn book, but every time I read another one, I'm reminded of why I love her so damn much. It's her characters. They are all just so human, so relateable, so flawed and likable. They could be someone so already know and you always end up feeling like their your new best friends. Amelia was just sweet and cute, vulnerable with no idea just how beautiful she was. Self-conscious with low self-esteem due to being hurt pretty badly in her last relationship, she just needs a man to show her how special she is to wipe away the damage from her past. Todd is funny, sexy and he knows it, and an amazing friend, he also suffers from commitment issues due to a battered heart of his own – but he is also a dumbass man who doesn't see what's in front of him until he pushes it into another mans arms – intentionally. This is definitely what I would qualify as a slow-burn romance. These two dance around the inevitable for so long I became best friends with cold showers. Anyone could feel the chemistry and connection between the two, but they fought it for various reasons – all of which were understandable, even if they did frustrate the ever-lovin hell outta me. They're scared. Scared of being vulnerable, scared of being hurt, but mostly they're scared of losing their friendship if they cross a line they can't go back from and things go south. And at the same time, they are just so very perfect for each other. I was not a fan of Davis and not because of the man he was. He was a nice enough guy, sweet and sexy in his own right – he was just standing in my way. Tatiana provided some much needed laughs (and a few gentle nudges when needed) and was the kind o f best friend every girl should have. In the end, this was an amazing journey and one I would recommend to anyone who likes a great friends to lovers romance chock full of emotion, humor, some steam and a whole lotta heart.
It's as if we both know that day in the studio, so many months ago, things changed for him, for us. I didn't realize then what I know now-how Todd could have been my one this whole time.
USA Today Bestselling author, Michelle Lynn moved around the Midwest most of her life, transferring from school to school before settling down in the outskirts of Chicago ten years ago, where she now resides with her husband and two kids. She developed a love of reading at a young age, which helped lay the foundation for her passion to write. With the encouragement of her family, she finally sat down and wrote one of the many stories that have been floating around in her head. When she isn’t reading or writing, she can be found playing with her kids, talking to her mom on the phone, or hanging out with her family and friends. But after chasing around twin preschoolers all day, she always cherishes her relaxation time after putting the kids to bed.
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