Helly Acton was born in Zimbabwe, and her family emigrated to the East Sussex coast when she was fifteen years old. Here, she finished school and spent her holidays in Saudi Arabia, where her father was working.
She studied Law at King’s College London before
following a more creative path into advertising.
In her mid-twenties, Helly escaped the rat race and took a three-month career break to travel in Africa, India and Asia before landing in Australia. What was supposed to last one year ended up lasting six, and after a life-affirming break-up in Sydney she returned home to find herself the last of her single friends.
Helly threw herself into the deep end of online dating in the city and uses her experience as a single woman in her early thirties, torn between steeling down and savouring her independence as a source of inspiration for her writing.
Helly currently live in Berkshire with her husband, Chris, and their dog child, Milo.
I absolutely LOVED The Shelf. One of those delicious books you just can’t put down. So many gorgeous witty one-liners. Utter PERFECTION! * Marian Keyes *
Fun, fresh and thought-provoking * Lindsey Kelk *
I haven’t been so immediately sucked in by a novel IN YEARS. Not only is the idea brilliant and original, but Helly’s writing is also compelling and hilarious. The Shelf is a must-read and I cannot recommend it highly enough * Lucy Vine *
[One of] the hottest summer reads … a plot that shouldn’t work on paper, but really does. * Cosmopolitan *