#Excerpt from Coming Home to Holly Close by Julie Houston @juliehouston2 @aria_fiction

Posted February 28, 2019 by Zoé in Excerpt, Reviews and Stuff / 0 Comments

#Excerpt from Coming Home to Holly Close by Julie Houston @juliehouston2 @aria_fiction

Today I have the pleasure of reading Julie Houston to the blog with an exclusive excerpt from her book Coming Home to Holly Close.

So what is the book about?

Coming Home to Holly Close Farm by Julie Houston
Published by Aria on February 5 2019
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Charlie Maddison loves being an architect in London, but when she finds out her boyfriend, Dominic is actually married, she runs back to the beautiful countryside of Westenbury and her parents. Charlie's sister Daisy, a landscape gardener, is also back home in desperate need of company and some fun.

Their great-grandmother, Madge – now in her early nineties – reveals she has a house, Holly Close Farm, mysteriously abandoned over sixty years ago, and persuades the girls to project manage its renovation.

As work gets underway, the sisters start uncovering their family's history, and the dark secrets that are hidden at the Farm. A heart-breaking tale of wartime romance, jealousy and betrayal slowly emerges, but with a moral at its end: true love can withstand any obstacle, and, before long, Charlie dares to believe in love again too...

Julie Houston's novels are heart-warming, full of joy and completely addictive. Perfect for all fans of Katie Fforde and Jill Mansell.

I do have a copy of this book too, so a review should be with you soon (Schedule permitting!)

So what have other bloggers said so far about the book??

Grass Monster says

This is well worth a read and I very much enjoyed it. It is hard to not give away too many spoilers, so I cant say too much.
Looking forward to more from Julie Houston in the future.

Rachel Burstin says

An exciting read, great for a rainy Winter’s afternoon. The author has created characters that draw you in. I love the feisty sisters who stand together against all odds.
A wonderful, heart wrenching at times, romance story told between two different eras of Charlie and her grandmother.

Stacy is Reading says

You know that you’re in safe hands when you pick up a Julie Houston book and this story was everything that I hoped it would be and more. The writing was warm and witty which welcomed you in like a big warm hug and I was enthralled with the tragically beautiful story that slowly unfurled before my eyes.

Be sure to also check out an

Excerpt over at Donna’s Book Blog, Book Addict Rambles, Jane Hunt Writer, Jessica Book Biz, Cheeky Pee Reads and Reviews,

Guest Post over at What Cathy Read Next, Short Book and Scribes, Fabulous Book Fiend

Spotlight over at Dash Fan Book Reviews,

Author Interviews over at A Daydreamers Thoughts,

More Reviews over at Being Anne, Book after Book, Bookish Jottings, Chicklit Club, Ginger Book Geek, Chells and Books, Mrs Average Evaluates (YouTube review),

And now my exclusive excerpt!!


Over the next couple of hours, I must have called Dominic’s mobile ten times, all to no avail. I sent as many emails, my tone ranging from jolly and friendly, so as not to frighten him into not replying, to pleading with him just to ring and talk to me, and then downright murderous where I left him in no doubt as to the state of his manly bits and pieces were he ever to cross my path in the future. And then, worried that I might be accused of stalking and sending threatening letters, reverted to jolly and friendly once more. At the end of the day I needed a reference from him. I couldn’t envisage applying to top architectural and property development companies back in London for a job and, when asked to supply references from my present post, have to say sorry, can’t do that, I was shagging the boss and his wife found out. Not overly professional. I wrote a final, grovelling email to Dominic saying that the least he could supply –if his tanned lithesome body was no longer on the menu –was a glowing reference as to my experience, capabilities and downright brilliance as a property developer.

And I was good. I knew I had an eye for finding the right property, haggling the price and then drawing up the plans for developments. Problem was that although I knew I was pretty good, and Dominic, having taken me on in the first place after seeing the projects I’d worked on previously, knew I was pretty good, I’d only done a couple of internships and temporary work before landing my dream job with Abraham Developments. Any prospective employer worth their salt would want to know what I’d been doing in the past eighteen months and why there was no one willing to back my application.

‘Right, Charlie, come on, you can’t stay up here all day hiding away.’ Mum bustled in, her arms full of clean towels and spare loo rolls. ‘Unpack these black bin bags, let’s get the dirty things washed and the rest hung in your wardrobe and then I have a couple of jobs for you.’

I groaned inwardly. Hell, this was like being a teenager again when I used to hide in my room.

‘Jobs?’ I frowned up at Mum from the depths of my bed and laptop. ‘I’m actually doing some work, Mum.’

She laughed. ‘Yes, you used to say that when you were sixteen, too. Revising, doing homework: anything to get out of peeling the potatoes or hanging up your wet towels.’

I sighed. ‘OK. What is it?’

‘We need to sort Granddad.’

I stared at her. ‘Which one? Aren’t they both, you know, dead?’

Mum tutted. ‘Of course they are, and Grandpa Maddison well and truly with his maker, I should hope, these past ten years, but Granddad Black is still in the utility.’

‘The utility? What’s he doing there? Has he come back to haunt us? He’s been dead two years now, hasn’t he?’

‘I feel so guilty every time I look up at the top of the utility units, Charlie.’ Mum pulled a face. ‘He’s up there with Gin and Tonic.’

I stared at her. ‘You’ve put Granddad in the utility and you leave him a gin and tonic? What every night? Or on his birthday and Christmas? What?’

Mum tutted. ‘Oh, you haven’t met the kittens, have you? Well, not so much kittens now, actually. Brother and sister, and feral little things they are too. They spend most of the time out in the paddock but come into the utility at night. They go up on top of the units to get out of the way and to sleep, but my father’s up there, too. I put him up there after the cremation. I didn’t like to put him in the garage; it gets nippy out there in winter and full of fumes too. He was always a bit asthmatic.’

‘Mum, you’re not telling me Granddad’s been roosting up on the top of the cupboards with two cats for the last two years?’

‘Well, no, the cats have only been with us a few months: your dad rescued them from some farmyard in the summer. Anyway, I don’t think the cats mind, darling,’ Mum said seriously. ‘In fact, I think they quite enjoy his company. Cats have this spiritual connection with the dead, don’t they? Wasn’t it the Egyptians who thought so? Anyway, my father, from what I knew of him, was a rather nice man. Quiet, but intelligent. I’m sure the cats haven’t been spooked with him sharing their bedroom.’

Well this sounds quite cute! Look forward to reading this one!

Until next time xxx

Follow the rest of the tour here

Thank you so much to Vicky at Aria for the tour invite and the author for the excerpt from the book

About Julie Houston

Julie Houston is the author of THE ONE SAVING GRACE, GOODNESS, GRACE AND

ME and LOOKING FOR LUCY, a Kindle top 100 general bestseller

and a Kindle #1

bestseller. She is married, with two teenage children and a mad cockerpoo and, like her

heroine, lives in a West Yorkshire village. She is also a teacher and a magistrate.

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