A Village Affair by Julie Houston | Blog Tour Guest Post (@JulieHouston2 @Aria_Fiction) #AVillageAffair

Published by Aria

Available in ebook and paperback (6 November 2018)

470 pages

Having thoroughly enjoyed previous books by Julie Houston (reviewed here on the blog), its a pleasure to be taking part in the blog tour for A Village Affair.  For a number of reasons I haven’t been able to read this in time for the tour, but I am looking forward to it.

For my turn today, I have a great guest post from Julie – thank you. My thanks also to Vicky off Head of Zeus/Aria for the tour invitation.


The Love Object

And then I slid down the wall…
by Julie Houston

Undoubtedly the best bit about writing Romance is conjuring up and creating the Love Object. It’s such a privilege: I can imagine and mould this gorgeous being however I choose for my female protagonists and, to be fair, he’s usually someone I’d fancy the pants off myself. I also realise, as I’m creating him, he will undoubtedly resemble the Love Objects I’ve known and slid down the wall over from being thirteen, when I first spotted a LO on the back seat of the school bus.

Slid down the wall over? My sister came up with the phrase, and it basically means meeting someone who knocks you so much off your feet with love/lust you can’t stand up.

In A Village Affair (Aria Nov 6th) Cassie tries to explain to Fi and Clare she’s never had that feeling of utter falling in love with anyone:

‘…never once have my insides turned inside out; never once did I want to slide down the wall.’
‘Slide down the wall?’ Clare laughed.
‘A girl I lived with at college once came back home and literally slid down the wall…’
‘Too much gin?’
‘… slid down the wall with lust and love. She couldn’t stand up.’

Fi and Clare both nodded, obviously in empathy with that almost-forgotten flatmate’s gymnastics…

It’s only when Cassie goes off to Mexico alone in an attempt get over her husband’s affair with her best friend and meets her own Love Object that she is able to report back:

‘For the first time in my life, my legs won’t hold me up and I have just slid down the wall and onto the floor.’

My first real Love Object was discovered at the town’s disco when, at the age of fifteen I gazed starry-eyed at a vision of wonder executing back drops on the dance floor. His wonderful – and slightly unusual – combination of blonde hair and brown eyes has been the model for both Nick in Goodness, Grace and Me as well as James in Coming Home to Holly Close Farm (Aria Feb 2019). My main Love Object at university – and, I hold my hand up, there were rather a lot – was spotted as I was sitting in the union bar. I glanced up, our eyes met and that was it. Harriet in Goodness, Grace and Me meets Nick in just the same way, leading to much wall sliding and eventually, for her, marriage and commitment.

It’s lovely, even when happily married to a wonderful man as I am, to have a Love Object to have a little dream over.

Contenders for the post have included George Michael (in his early days),


Enriques Iglesias, (on whom I based Seb Henderson In Goodness, Grace and Me and The One Saving Grace and yes, he’s also appearing in Coming home to Holly Close Farm)


Matthew McConaughey and rather strangely, Robbie Coltrane (as Cracker I hasten to add, not Hagrid.)

Even more worrying was the little thing I had for John Prescott.

John Prescott? I know, I know. Beyond me too.


My latest LO is Kygo, the Norwegian DJ and songwriter

Take a look on You tube at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert 2015 and you might get my drift: I’m already basing the LO for Lexia, my character in the novel I’m writing at the moment, on this talented musician. At the risk of being labelled A Sleazy Old Woman (female equivalent of a Dirty Old Man) imagine my delight when, on holiday in Ibiza this summer with my kids (twenty-one and twenty-four) I was told Kygo was DJing down in one of the clubs. The kids refused to let me go with them. I’ve told them when I die I want to come out to Kygo’s “Firestone” being played at my funeral, to which my ever-loving swiftly pointed out he’d heard of people going in, but certainly never once coming out.


Thank you so much for the entertaining post Julie.  John Prescott?  Really?


|   About the Book   |


Cassie Beresford has recently landed her dream job as deputy head at her local, idyllic village primary school, Little Acorns. So, the last thing she needs is her husband of twenty years being ‘outed’ at a village charity auction – he has been having an affair with one of her closest friends.

As if that weren’t enough to cope with, Cassie suddenly finds herself catapulted into the head teacher position, and at the forefront of a fight to ward off developers determined to concrete over the beautiful landscape.

But through it all, the irresistible joy of her pupils, the reality of keeping her teenage children on the straight and narrow, her irrepressible family and friends, and the possibility of new love, mean what could have been the worst year ever, actually might be the best yet…

Julie Houston’s novels are funny, wonderfully warm and completely addictive. Perfect for all fans of Gervaise Phinn, Katie Fforde and Jill Mansell.



|   About the Author   |



Julie Houston is the author of five novels:

Published Nov 2018 by HeadOfZeus/Aria A VILLAGE AFFAIR
and Coming Feb 2019 HOLLY CLOSE FARM

Julie lives in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire where her novels are set, and her only claims to fame are that she teaches part-time at ‘Bridget Jones’ author Helen Fielding’s old junior school and her neighbour is ‘Chocolat’ author, Joanne Harris. After University, where she studied Education and English Literature, she taught for many years as a junior school teacher. As a newly qualified teacher, broke and paying off her first mortgage, she would spend every long summer holiday working on different Kibbutzim in Israel. After teaching for a few years she decided to go to New Zealand to work and taught in Auckland for a year before coming back to this country. She now teaches just two days a week, and still loves the buzz of teaching junior-aged children. She has been a magistrate for the past nineteen years, and, when not distracted by Ebay, Twitter and Ancestry, spends much of her time writing. Julie is married, has a twenty-four-year-old son and twenty-one-year-old daughter and a ridiculous Cockerpoo called Lincoln. She runs and swims because she’s been told it’s good for her, but would really prefer a glass of wine, a sun lounger and a jolly good book – preferably with Matthew Mcconaughay in attendance.

She hates skiing, gets sick on boats and wouldn’t go pot-holing or paddy diving if her life depended on it.


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4 thoughts on “A Village Affair by Julie Houston | Blog Tour Guest Post (@JulieHouston2 @Aria_Fiction) #AVillageAffair”

  • I had to chuckle that you share my admiration of Robbie Coltrane’s ‘Cracker’ character. I’ve often questioned myself at being so attracted to an overweight, damaged man. Yet he was SO intelligent and I found myself thinking he was sort of sexy… (though, like you, I am very happily married)
    I do worry a little about your attraction for John Prescott…
    My alternates would be: Alan Rickman, Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Clive Owen and Hugh Grant.

    • I worry about my own attraction for John Prescott!! Luckily I think I’m over it now!! Know what you mean about Clive Owen. Loved him in Arthur, but went off him in the film with Jude Law and Julia Roberts and Natalie Portman. Can’t remember the film. Have to say never heard of Dean Morgan!! Thanks so much for your comments, Lynne xx

    • Thanks for commenting Inge, I agree – although George Michael in his younger days was very easy on the eye! 🙂

I do love to read any comments 😊

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