Photo by Ashleigh Taylor Portrait

Photo by Ashleigh Taylor Portrait

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Signed copies also available at Chaucer’s Bookstore (Santa Barbara, CA)

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Holly has done something extraordinary with this book - she has demystified the phases of the breast cancer journey in a most soulful, intimate and courageous way. Bittersweet is not only an invaluable source of information but also a means of empowerment and enlightenment for anyone with this diagnosis.
— Pamela Robins, Author, Meditating with Animals

What does a total double mastectomy look like?  How fast does it heal? What happens to the large surgery incisions over time? What will tissue expanders look like as they are filled up? What will my breasts look like after everything is done?

When Holly was going through breast cancer treatment, she looked to the internet for photos to answer these questions, but was met with only before and after photos. She desperately wanted to know what it looked like from beginning to end and everything in between.

Bittersweet© is a vulnerable photographic journey documenting the painful and uplifting process of losing and rebuilding a woman's breasts.  Written by Holly, a wife, mother, and breast cancer survivor.  

Holly will share all of the photos that her husband, Wiley, shot of her ever changing breasts from double mastectomy through reconstruction and ending with cherry blossom tattoos to cover her scars.  Holly thought she had lost her identity, but found her true life's purpose to support and honor women's experiences with breast cancer.  This book will share that journey and show that you can survive and rebuild your body and life after breast cancer.


Rarely does one show others the vulnerability of a healing transformation as Holly has in Bittersweet. Highly informative as well as raw, powerful, and courageous, women (and their families) will find within these pages a true friend and guide during their own healing journey and hopefully will know their path can lead to greater beauty, strength and fortitude in the process. Inspiring, at times harrowing, and even funny, I believe readers everywhere will become more empowered by reading these pages.
— Zhena Muzyka, Author, Life by the Cup & Women’s Empowerment Advocate
I am so impressed with Holly’s willingness to share her story with the goal of bringing awareness to our collective cancer journey in such a beautiful way. She will always be an inspiration to me, as I watched her go from diagnosis to thriver with the most positive attitude I have seen.
— — Susan Kapadia, Founder & Executive Director, OjaiCARES

All photos on this site were taken by Wiley Thrasher, Holly's husband and best friend unless credited otherwise.