This title made it to the top 1% of books on Amazon within a few days of its release, and again in weeks 3 and 5. It has also received four 5-star book reviews from critics.
Reader reviews are listed first; scroll down for editorial/critical praise.
Reader Praise for Halfway There
These quotes were taken from public reviews, or were sent directly to me with permission to post and attribute them.
"I can't put it down! It's so good!"
- Edyta S.
"Best book I have read in years. I can totally relate to so many facets of this book, from being broken, to sick, to alone, to a much better person today for all of it. Well worth the money and it's an easy and enjoyable read."
- Pamela B.
"Relatable as h*ll and written beautifully!...a self-help book that feels like a good conversation with a friend over a glass of wine! Buy it!"
- Maren E.
"I couldn’t put it down, each chapter had me journaling for pages and tomorrow I intend to re-read it, as I expect it will resonate even more the second time."
- Audrey K.
"This was the perfect book to neutralize the sting of life rejections AND the realization of turning 30...This is an easy-to-follow, must-read for anyone navigating mid-life and trying to make it (whatever that means to you)."
- Danielle H.
"I cannot express how much this book means to me personally because it makes me feel less odd/conflicted about certain aspects of my own journey as I too approach midlife."
- Bart M.
"I've read half the book already and I just got it yesterday...your new book is inspiring."
- Stephen V.
"I'm three chapters in and just received it last night. It has changed my outlook already."
"I went away camping and your book is so wonderful. I am reading a chapter per night and I love it. Speaks volumes."
- William R.
"For me, this book is a refreshing antidote to the fake world of constant preening on social media...Elizabeth gets real, talks straight, and gives the reader hope that we can all find joy in the present and in our unique circumstances."
- David D.
"I am enjoying your book tremendously. Very sage and reassuring."
- Stacy C.
"The book is amazing!!! I’m ordering a copy for my mom! I was telling her about it and she wants to read it!"
- Nashla K.
"Haynes is a very intuitive, brilliant writer...Vulnerability is the buzz word of 2020. As such, I've immersed myself in the works of Brené Brown, and others. This one ranks right up there with these other famous works of contemporary literature."
- Vicki S.
"...a story of determination and encouragement...You’ll end the book having come to know Elizabeth and possibly yourself in ways that may surprise you."
- Cindy N.
"I'd recommend her book to anyone looking for inspiration or even just a bit of understanding."
- David M.
"Her writing style is elegant and flowing, and easy to read. These lessons stimulate me to think deeply and apply them to my own life. I highly recommend this book."
- Wayne L.
"Her journey to self-discovery is so engaging and it's only halfway there. :) Can’t wait to follow her for the rest of her story!...Super cleverly written!"
- Tanvi D.
"I love your book...your words are relatable and it is warm and beautiful. Hell, I don't even like to read, but even your Forward was awesome!"
- Marion M.
- Deborah B.
"If you've had really bad relationships, abusive parents, or some other trauma, you will find something meaningful in this book. If you're an introvert, find it hard to step away from your electronics, or just can't always find motivation to keep going, you'll find something meaningful in this book...I'd recommend it to anyone."
- Barnes & Noble Customer (public review)
"Best book about midlife EVER."
- Amazon Customer (anonymous public review)
Readers' Favorite is respected by publishers such as Penguin Random House, Simon & Schuster, and Harper Collins.
"A memoir of positivity that is bound to encourage anyone to live life one day at a time, it’s a better alternative to self-help books that give false hope."
"This is a sincere attempt to share lessons based on her own realities that anyone can reflect upon, whether you are middle-aged or not."
"Her memoir is so uplifting and will motivate many women who are facing a crossroads in their lives to believe in themselves and continue to strive towards their goals. It's never too late to get back on track and achieve anything you want."
Midwest Book Review
"While autobiography lies at the heart of these explorations, so does an assessment of revised strategies at midlife. This will particularly interest self-help readers who look to change their own self-assessments about how to better live the remaining years of life."
"Halfway There: Lessons at Midlife is more than one woman's struggle to reconcile her life. It's a blueprint for how to revamp and revise perspective and objective for maximum results, and should be on the reading list of any self-help reader facing middle age."
Reviewed by: Vincent Dublado
"How does life show your calling? Is it okay not to have kids? Is joy attainable? These are just some of the questions that Elizabeth C. Haynes answers in her memoir, Halfway There: Lessons at Midlife. This book turns her own midlife experiences into snippets of episodic stories that she wrote in spurts over a long period. This is a sincere attempt to share lessons based on her own realities that anyone can reflect upon, whether you are middle-aged or not. The pieces here can be downright humorous, thought-provoking, or simply uplifting. She is an insomniac who learned to let go of looking at the clock during the night, a daughter who stands up to her mother to set boundaries, and an individual who has the courage to be herself in an ocean of people who love emulating others.
Whatever the case may be, you will find a connection in these stories. In life, we have trodden similar paths, and you might find it worthwhile to lend an ear to what she has to say. Halfway There reflects Elizabeth C. Haynes’ passion for shared knowledge. To use her hardships and trauma to reach out to others reinforces that bond between storytelling and healing. A glimpse of meaning for her own existence precipitates a self-conscious awareness of our own capacity to mold our lives the way we want it to and that everything is all right with the world, even if it doesn’t always turn out in our favor. A memoir of positivity that is bound to encourage anyone to live life one day at a time, it’s a better alternative to self-help books that give false hope."
Reviewed by: Lesley Jones
"Everyone's life is filled with memories, some pivotal, some insignificant but each one helps build the rich and unique tapestry of our existence. In this personal and inspirational memoir, Halfway There, Elizabeth C. Haynes recollects the moments in her life that have sparked the greatest life lessons. From coping with the end of her marriage, the loss of direction, home, and career to dealing with a debilitating rare disease, life seemed a never-ending uphill struggle. Throughout these experiences, discover how Elizabeth was able to turn her life around, become a successful author, and face future ordeals and obstacles with an optimistic mindset. Hopefully, her experiences can help you discover and appreciate your uniqueness and the talents you have that will bring you true inner peace and gratitude.
I absolutely loved Halfway There by Elizabeth C. Haynes. Her honesty and openness were admirable. The emotions she experienced during the breakdown of relationships, dealing with trauma, negative situations, and people were very relatable. There were so many helpful techniques on building confidence in ourselves, appreciating and celebrating our uniqueness, and following your gut instincts. I also enjoyed the sections on learning to let go of negative memories, not allowing the pressure from outside influences to cloud your judgment. The chapter on spirituality and transitioning to change was also extremely insightful and the author deals with many issues I have struggled with. Her memoir is so uplifting and will motivate many women who are facing a crossroads in their lives to believe in themselves and continue to strive towards their goals. It's never too late to get back on track and achieve anything you want. You will learn how to effectively look to the future and start making happy memories and not be inhibited by painful past experiences. This quotation is my absolute favorite: 'We stay the same until doing so is more painful than changing.'”
Reviewed by: Edith Wairimu
"Elizabeth C. Haynes’s tone throughout is warm and conversational. Her empathy for people in varying difficult circumstances is evident. The book is encouraging and inspires strength through life’s struggles. I loved that the work is not only conscious of life's trials but also views them as stages in life that can be overcome and that carry lessons with them. It also recognizes the beauty in everyday life experiences and discusses the need to appreciate these moments. Other lessons included are equally impactful and they relate to body positivity, self-kindness, maturity, treating other people with understanding and kindness, among others. Halfway There: Lessons at Midlife by Elizabeth C. Haynes is a thoughtful, engaging memoir that contains uplifting lessons that will resonate with any reader seeking insight and encouragement."
Reviewed by: D. Donovan (Midwest Book Review)
Halfway There: Lessons at Midlife is an autobiographical collection of personal stories of true grit, survival tactics, and the process of establishing boundaries, independence, and individuality. It comes from a woman who faced abuse at an early age and confronted many choices that stemmed from it. She reaches middle age hauling the baggage of trauma, poor decisions, and evolving chronic illness.
Life seems to be one obstacle after another, and yet something special happens when midlife is reached. Elizabeth C. Haynes finds herself reassessing her values, goals, and life experiences for the lessons they hold not for validating her past, but justifying her future intentions and actions.
This process offers a learning experience not just for Haynes, but for those who read about her approach to life in general and midlife in particular.
From cutting ties with toxic people to creating a new perspective on life, Haynes reveals the mechanics of a process which both challenges and invigorates her: "Doing these sorts of things helps me feel like I have the upper hand on the inside. Like I am working to take back control of my feelings and my world, even if it’s done slowly and step-by-step. I think this alone can help us take some power back and claim our own positivity, our own emotional health. There is strength in making a plan, and nobody can take this away from us; it lies within ourselves."
While autobiography lies at the heart of these explorations, so does an assessment of revised strategies at midlife. This will particularly interest self-help readers who look to change their own self-assessments about how to better live the remaining years of life.
Embedded in these experiences are strategies readers can follow to success. For example: Haynes has been a life-long insomniac. Her simple strategy of turning her clock around also changes her perception of night, sleep, and frustration: "I had two goals in mind when I turned that clock around. The first was to eliminate math (okay, I joke, let’s start over). The first was to eliminate anxiety about time by eliminating the thing that measures time, and the second was to improve my ability to get back to sleep by creating a scenario where I could lie to myself about what time it actually was. This strategy works pretty well because when it’s dark, unless you’re tracking the path of the constellations like a sailor, dark is dark is dark. So it’s pretty much impossible to know what time it is if you just look casually out the window at the space between you and the backyard fence. The only clues to time in the nighttime space are when the last light of the sun holds the twilight, or when the first rays of morning just barely tint the sky. And neither of these moments are my problem times."
Her long road to rediscovering joy in life will delight readers who look for blends of life experience, uplifting new takes on positivity, and clues on how to recapture that burst of energy and excitement that drives the days with meaning.
Halfway There: Lessons at Midlife is more than one woman's struggle to reconcile her life. It's a blueprint for how to revamp and revise perspective and objective for maximum results, and should be on the reading list of any self-help reader facing middle age.