Review: Better, by Carey Heywood

Melissa’s Review of Better, by Carey Heywood:

Better is a heart-breaking story of loss and sacrifice – a story in a world of emotion all its own.

I want to call Aubrey sheltered, but that’s not the right word. She’s changed her life plan to help her family deal with her Aunt Ally’s illness. Aubrey willingly sacrifices living on her own and even finishing school so that she can be there for her aunt and best friend. Ally’s hope is that when she gets better, she’ll be able to travel the world. Her “better board” hangs in her room as a constant reminder of the life she’ll have when she’s healed. Sadly, that time never comes for Ally.

Aubrey is too determined, however, to let her aunt Ally’s dreams die along with her body. She vows to take Ally’s trip around the world, scattering Ally’s ashes at each stop. Those are perhaps the most poignant and tear-jerking moments of the book. It’s in those quiet moments of mourning that we see Aubrey’s true strength shine.

Of course Aubrey is not alone. Her travel companion, Adam (the son of Aubrey’s father’s business associate) is used to traveling alone, and, at first is none too pleased to have to watch over Aubrey. While the main purpose of this book is to follow Aubrey on her aunt’s “better journey”, you can’t help but be pulled in to the angsty and emotional relationship that develops with Adam. His kindness is hidden behind his protectiveness and once it comes out, I dare you not to fall in love with him.

This is a book that you do not want to miss. Heywood weaves an emotional tale for which you’ll need a box of tissues and a bottle of wine. You will forever be a better person for having read it.

Better Review Blitz

Review Blitz


Book Title: Better
Author: Carey Heywood
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Release Date: February 17, 2014
Hosted by: Book Enthusiast Promotions


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?


“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.”

Meet the Author

Carey HeywoodCarey 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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