Review Blitz: Better by Carey Heywood **GIVEAWAY**



Aubrey is embarking on a bucket-list trip around the world, the last wish of her Aunt Ally. It was supposed to be the trip Ally would have taken when she got better. Now, it’s just a chance for Aubrey to say good-bye.

Adam escapes in his solo trips overseas, working just enough to fund the next one. When the opportunity to circle the globe falls in his lap, he can’t refuse. The only catch is that he won’t be traveling alone this time.

Unable to hide from each other, Adam’s overprotective nature thwarts Aubrey’s desire to find her own way. Can they move past initial assumptions to find something better?


This book was a emotional journey. It started out breaking my heart and then slowly putting it back together, although it wasn’t until the very end that I felt like I was emotionally stable enough to carry on with my non-fiction life.

Aubrey’s aunt Ally has cancer. It is agressive and it’s not getting better. But she has a better board in her room to encourage her to get better so she can travel to all those places that are pinned to it. But the sad fact of the matter, she is not getting better and when the time finally comes for her to say goodbye, she has one wish left and that wish is for Aubrey.

She wants Aubrey to take that better board and live it. She wants her to visit all those places that she never did. Aubrey is 24 years old and scared out of her mind. She was in school and doing what she could, but when Ally got so sick, Aubrey made the decision to stay with her aunt and help in any way she could. But now she is going to do this. She is going to embark on a journey that was meant for Ally. Aubrey is stronger than she realizes and no matter what, she wants to see this journey through, if for anything else, for her aunt.

But when her dad worries about her traveling all over the world on her own he puts into place his own plan. Knowing that Ally’s wishes included the very specific detail that her parents are not to travel with her, her dad finds someone who can. So it begins… the journey to discover who Aubrey is and who she wants to be and to celebrate the life of her best friend and aunt, Ally.

What Aubrey doesn’t expect is her traveling mate, Adam. He is smoking hot and a photographer so the trip makes sense for him to take and the fact that Aubrey’s dad is footing the bill for him to take it, he willingly agrees. But Adam and Aubrey get off on the wrong foot. Adam thinks Aubrey is a spoiled brat who needs someone to accompany her on her trip. Aubrey doesn’t want Adam along for the ride. She wants to do this to figure out who she is and what Ally wanted. But the two of them manage to find some common ground and they discover a lot about themselves on this trip of a lifetime.

This is a beautiful story of love and compassion. It is not just about the love between Aubrey and Adam that we get to share, but the unconditional love of an aunt and a niece. I spent the first part of this book in tears. It truly was very emotional. Anyone who has lost someone so close can appreciate the relationship of Aubrey and Ally. But this book was such an inspirational journey. We are viewers to Aubrey’s travel through grief and the acceptance of love. We watch as Adam finally accepts that he isn’t going to lose another that he cares so deeply about.

This book was just so much more than just another book. It was heartbreaking and full of tender love all at the same time. I felt so connected with the characters in this book and the journey they take until the end. I was left in complete awe. It was beyond beautiful. It touched my heart and made me think about how precious life is and that we really need to cherish those we love while they are here with us. You never know when tomorrow isn’t going to come.

Touching, moving, heartbreaking and loving. This book was amazingly beautiful.


“What are you doing in here?” I stammer.

He’s on his knees by the bed, reaching under. “This bed is a trundle. There’s no way I’m sleeping on that sofa.”

“But I’m sleeping in here,” I argue.

I watch as he pulls the trundle out. It’s smaller, maybe twin sized.

“Yes, and I’m sleeping here.” He makes a wide sweep with his hands over the smaller bed.

I remember how awkward it felt, sleeping so near him the night before. At least the trundle is low to the ground. My mouth drops as he depresses a lever and raises it to the same height as my bed, and the way it’s made, we’ll be face to face with maybe an inch separating his bed from mine.

I gulp.

He turns to look at me. “Um, I was going to get changed.”

“Oh, don’t mind me.”

“Out,” I order him.

His eyes travel lazily down me, and I shiver. His mouth twitches before he turns to leave, closing the door behind him. I hurry over to it and lock it, sagging against it. I had been looking forward to a night away from him. I quickly change, unlock the “door, and climb into bed. I hear the door open and shuffle further under the covers.

When I wake the next morning, I’m facing him. Wiping sleep from my eyes, I watch him. He’s shirtless, his sheet draping low across his hips. I lick my lips, mesmerized by the rise and fall of his chest. I quietly slip out of bed and out of the room, taking my clothes for the day with me. I need distance. I can’t stay in that room any longer. It smells like him, a mixture of Irish Spring, his cologne, and something just him.

I shower and get dressed. I’m in the kitchen, rummaging through the cabinets for something to snack on when he walks out. He’s still shirtless. Why can’t he put on a shirt?

“Hungry?” he asks, scratching the back of his head.

“A bit,” I admit.

“Give me a minute. I saw a bakery close by.”


He walks back into the room and shuts the door. A couple minutes later, he walks back out, now in jeans and a vintage looking M*A*S*H t-shirt.

“Nice shirt.”

He laughs. “It was my dad’s.”

“You’re wearing hand me downs,” I joke.

“Just trying to live the green life.”

I don’t give him the satisfaction of a chuckle even though that was funny as I follow him out of the flat.

“What about Abe?”

“He can get his own breakfast,” he says, grabbing a set of keys that are hanging on a hook by the door. I give him a look.

“Don’t worry. I’ll bring him something back.” He holds the door open for me. I tuck my hair behind my ear and hurry down the stairs. I wait for him at the bottom, not sure which direction to go. He comes up beside me, tilting his head to the right. We turn together and walk.

“I saw you.”

“Excuse me?” I stop.

He’s now a step ahead of me. He looks back at me.

“I saw you watching me this morning.”

“I wasn’t,” I stammer, looking away.

“If you say so,” he says as he continues to walk.

I follow him but stay a step behind on purpose. I can’t believe he saw me.”


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Carey Heywood is a self-published New York Times and USA Today bestselling author with six books out and many more to come.

She was born and raised in Alexandria, Virginia. Ever the mild-mannered citizen, Carey spends her days working in the world of finance, and at night, she retreats into the lives of her fictional characters.

Supporting her all the way are her husband, three sometimes-adorable children, and their nine-pound attack Yorkie.


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