Fiction Book Reviews

Literary Fiction | Outreach | Shelly Berry

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We’re delighted to be on tour today sharing Laura’s thoughts for Outreach by Shelly Berry.

There’s also a tour-wide giveaway – don’t miss it!


When Emily was offered a new job in London, she was sure that her life was about to change new friends, a career in the big city and the boyfriend she always wanted.

Her new life turns out to be more complicated than she expected. Her flat mates don’t understand her. Her colleagues mock everything about her. Even her father doesn t support her. The only person who offers her any encouragement is David.

He’s married. He’s her manager. To Emily it’s clear that they have something special. As their relationship develops, everyone seems to want to sabotage their chances.

But some things are meant to be…

Book cover for Outreach by Shelly Berry

Outreach by Shelly Berry is published by Book Guild Publishing Ltd and is available to purchase in digital and paperback formats.

Review

I was hooked reading this book and finished very swiftly. The writing is superb as the tension created meant I wanted to keep reading to discover what the main character would do.

 Emily moves to London to work with vulnerable adults in Drug and Alcohol Action, as a support worker. Leaving her dad, a social worker, who does not seem to have much confidence in his daughter’s choice of career, Emily begins her role shadowing another support worker, Fran. Their manager, Dan is kind, friendly but married, Emily fails to recognise this.

 Emily is a tricky character to like as she is obsessive, awkward, creepy and with social problems. She struggles to maintain relationships with her flatmates and co-workers. Although it was enjoyable to read from her view as I found her behaviour unpredictable. At work she was either highly organised or struggling to grasp a seriousness in her cases. Her obsession with Dan becomes tense as I kept feeling that something big was about to happen.

 In the end you feel sorry for Emily as its clear she does not have that much love and support from her dad and therefore becomes obsessed with an older man.

 A great read.

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Shelly Berry lives in Waltham Forest, London. Having gained a BA Joint Honours Degree in Visual Art and Sociology at Keele University and a Diploma in Therapeutic Counselling, she has since worked in the public sector with vulnerable adults and children – including those affected by mental illness, drug and alcohol misuse, disability, criminal behaviour, homelessness and domestic and sexual abuse. During this time, Shelly developed and nurtured her love of writing. As well as writing fiction, she has previously written for a number of blogs and now writes for the Waltham Forest Echo.

Author photo Shelly Berry

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I've been blogging about my interests at Jera's Jamboree for 8+ years. My love of reading, crocheting and being out in nature are all things that help me unwind from my role as an Inclusion Lead in a primary school. I'm passionate about early help and sharing strategies with families to empower and help build resilience. I'm a member of of my Local Authority's Early Help Operational Board, working alongside other professionals to instigate change and growth.