The #TFBookClub reads ‘Halfway’ by B E Jones set in WALES

11th November 2018

Thank you for joining us as we read Halfway by B E Jones set in WALES (November/December 2018).

We hope you enjoy reading this crime thriller, set in the darkness of the Halfway Inn, somewhere in Wales and with Christmas approaching….

Halfway’ by B E Jones, set in WALES

We will be chatting about the book throughout November and December 2018, so if you are reading it with us, please come and join the dialogue!

The #TFBookClub is your book club – we are here to help you discover new titles that will transport you to interesting locations via top literature for some exceptional #literarywanderlust.

As you read, please come and chat and share your thoughts in several ways:

  • Here on our dedicated blogpost, leave your thoughts in the Comments section below
  • On FACEBOOK
  • On TWITTER using #TFBookClub
  • On INSTAGRAM using #TFBookClub
  • On PINTEREST following this link 
  • And once you’ve turned the final page, we’d love it if you could write your own review, which you can do on tripfiction.com using the Add A Review tab. Help us to build the #TFBookClub and the TripFiction website!

REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO READING THIS BOOK TOGETHER!

Andrew and Tina for the TripFiction Team

Do come and join team TripFiction on Social Media:

Twitter (@TripFiction), Facebook (@TripFiction.Literarywanderlust), YouTube (TripFiction #Literarywanderlust), Instagram (@TripFiction) and Pinterest (@TripFiction)

Replies

  1. User: tripfiction

    Posted on: 13/11/2018 at 8:52 pm

    Kicking off the comments….the author really captures that echoey sense of heavy snowfall, eerie, whiteout, edgy…. Wales is almost submerged in snow. What are your thoughts on the book?

    Comment

  2. User: Julie Mellis

    Posted on: 14/11/2018 at 5:16 pm

    Dark and twisted. Only got into about three quarters and boy does it all start!! You do wonder where all the different stories are going, then *bam* they all slot together for the finale!! I’ve never come across a figure like Lissa and the way she behaves at the crime scene at the end. Bravo!! Always looking for something different in a thriller, so this book ticks that box.

    Comment

  3. User: Bonnie K.

    Posted on: 14/11/2018 at 10:34 pm

    This was a fast-paced, tension-filled, twisty read. There were several narratives among the three main characters that all had some kind of connection. I don’t think anyone will really guess who was responsible for the gruesome attacks until close to the very end. Smart, psychological read.

    Comment

  4. User: Melanie Daniels

    Posted on: 15/11/2018 at 1:33 pm

    Hi, just wanted to say that I’m about a third of the way through and totally hooked! I do enjoy a good crime thriller and I like the way this one is written. The three separate narratives are intriguing and I’m enjoying reading about the cold, snowy countryside from the comfort of my warm sofa (and bed!) There’s something very comforting about reading about freezing weather from a position of comfort and warmth indoors, a bit like listening to rain on the windows. I have a sneaking suspicion about one of the characters…. I will let you know if I was right when I get to the end. Hopefully there will be a few twists and turns along the way to keep me guessing!

    Comment

  5. User: Leah Tonna

    Posted on: 15/11/2018 at 2:37 pm

    I read this crime thriller quite quickly & enjoyed the twists all the way through. I’ve now started the book again, more slowly, & I’m now noticing the clues to the characters right from the Prologue. Dark, cold & horribly atmospheric, I want to understand Lissa’s thoughts & behaviour more. A fascinating read.

    Comment

    2 Comments

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 16/11/2018 at 9:13 am

      I guess that shows that the book has layers. It will be interesting to see what you pick up second time around!

      Comment

    • User: Leah Tonna

      Posted on: 21/11/2018 at 10:41 am

      I did read it a second time, & realised how cleverly the author has hinted without actually saying who the separate characters are & how the story will end. Glad I finished it before the weather turned so cold…it’s chilling.

      Comment

  6. User: Susan Lacey

    Posted on: 16/11/2018 at 9:09 am

    Just about to start reading it! Going on the comments above I’m not going to get much else down!

    Comment

    2 Comments

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 16/11/2018 at 9:12 am

      Maybe not…. hope you have nothing planned for the next few hours….!

      Comment

    • User: Susan Lacey

      Posted on: 17/11/2018 at 4:43 pm

      So, I finished it today. A fairly quick read but engrossing. Each of the voices we hear is from a flawed and/or tortured character. In fact, none of the main characters were appealing to me.

      The use of different voices to narrate the story was a very useful device in keeping the reader guessing about the role each would play in the final denouement. The weather also played a key role in maintaining the suspense.

      It is a well written book with enough twists and turns to keep the reader turning the pages.

      Thank you for the opportunity to read it.

      Comment

  7. User: Harriet Steel

    Posted on: 18/11/2018 at 7:09 am

    I’m about halfway through now. I have to admit, I’m not gripped yet, perhaps because the frequent change of viewpoints is stopping me feeling particularly engaged by any of the characters. The writing is good though and the comments here encourage me to keep going. There’s plenty of atmosphere with bleak winter scenes, the sinister pub, and sad or creepy characters. I don’t think the Welsh Tourist board will be sending the author flowers to thank her for good publicity!

    Comment

  8. User: Melanie Daniels

    Posted on: 19/11/2018 at 10:22 pm

    I thought this was a really gripping read and couldn’t put it down towards the end. I was right in one of my guesses about a main character (trying not to post spoilers just in case anyone hasn’t finished it yet!) but pleasantly surprised by all the plot twists towards the end. I can’t say I liked any of the main characters, but I didn’t find the book any less engaging because of that. This was a pacey crime thriller with dark, interesting and complex characters and a unique storyline. The snowstorm, the rural setting and the dismal old pub provided a sinister and almost gothic feel, which when combined with the anecdotal nature of much of the storyline put me in mind of a sort of modern day Grimm’s fairy tales. Lissa banging on the pub door being almost akin to Hansel and Gretel taking refuge in the gingerbread house! A great read, full of drama, plot twists and tension. Thank you for my copy!

    Comment

  9. User: Jane Willis

    Posted on: 20/11/2018 at 1:59 pm

    I’m finding it really hard to get into this book. It’s dark and sinister but so far, about 40 pages in, I’m not feeling any sense of cohesion about it. I really just dropped in today to see if anyone else was feeling the same, and I notice several saying they didn’t get into it until a long way in, so I’ll stick with it!

    Comment

    3 Comments

    • User: Harriet Steel

      Posted on: 20/11/2018 at 11:35 pm

      I recommend sticking with it. I’m about two-thirds of the way through now, and I think it’s coming together very well. I’m just about to read another chunk before I drop off!

      Comment

    • User: Susan Lacey

      Posted on: 21/11/2018 at 12:21 pm

      Yes, it’s worth sticking with it – there are some interesting twists!

      Comment

    • User: Sara R Hill

      Posted on: 25/11/2018 at 10:08 am

      Persevere. It will be worth it!

      Comment

  10. User: Harriet Steel

    Posted on: 22/11/2018 at 8:30 am

    Finished! The last hundred pages were by far the best for me. I found the book became more of a page turner when it got into revealing how the characters were interrelated. They then became more interesting and less shadowy. The author has a rather cynical view of how one advances in the police force! Looking back, there were some clues early on. Nevertheless, I appreciated the author taking the trouble to tie up all the loose ends in the denouement. Many thanks the publisher for providing my copy.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 03/12/2018 at 4:13 pm

      Thank you so much for taking part, it’s been a good read with lots of interesting views on it!

      Comment

  11. User: julier

    Posted on: 22/11/2018 at 9:57 am

    I found this book very disjointed to begin with. I also didn’t like the fact that none of the characters have names but are initially referred to by their job or function eg nurse. However, the more I read, the more engrossed I became as everything became clear. There are numerous plot twists and I don’t want to give out any spoilers so let’s just say trust nobody, believe nobody! I don’t think any of the characters are likeable but it’s a fascinating book nonetheless.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: lapsapchung

      Posted on: 25/11/2018 at 7:38 am

      It’s an interesting technique, making NONE of the characters likeable, isn’t it? In most books we are expected to like, and be supportive of, at least one of the characters, but I think what made this one so sinister was the fact they were all so unpleasant, for different reasons. Well, Jim was OK, but then he only played a very minor part.

      Comment

  12. User: lapsapchung

    Posted on: 24/11/2018 at 8:48 am

    Well, I persevered and I’m glad I did – I often find books fizzle out towards the end but this was definitely more sizzle than fizzle! I did find the fact that there were three viewpoint characters, largely un-named, very confusing but with hindsight I can see that if names had been used, it would have been too easy for the reader to make connections early on in the book and the twists and turns towards the end would have been no surprise. I’m going to have to re-read some parts of the book, especially Billy’s confession, to see whether he ever referred to Riley by gender because I’d definitely had the wrong impression there!
    As Tripfiction readers we are always looking at the sense of place and in this book I didn’t feel it was strong. Although the place names were Welsh and tea and Welsh cakes seemed to be served whenever anyone visited a house, the image the descriptions conjured up in my mind’s eye could have been anywhere that there was a forest.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 03/12/2018 at 4:12 pm

      No, I agree, setting wasn’t a strong character in the book…. that blanket of snow could have been covering all kinds of things!!!! Thanks for taking part!

      Comment

  13. User: Sara R Hill

    Posted on: 25/11/2018 at 10:11 am

    Well I didn’t see that coming! Like other readers I was a bit confused but the last few chapters were gripping. I had to stay up into the early hours of the morning to finish it. It was a very clever story.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: barbara baer

      Posted on: 27/11/2018 at 8:23 pm

      “Halfway” by B.E. Jones.

      As if vying with the Scandinavians for the darkest noir mystery, B.E. Jones’ “Halfway” is set during a snow storm in rural Wales near a village called Pont where everything’s frozen except where someone has been just slaughtered and the place reeks of blood. The bleak Christmas-time murders happen in an old farm house and a decrepit pub, the eponymous Halfway Inn. If by any chance you are looking for a Christmas in Wales with the charm of Dylan Thomas, “Halfway” is not your book. The warning words of what you’ll be getting into come early, in the first line of the prologue.
      “When she sees the hatchet in his hand, she knows it’s going to happen right here, right now.”
      If you have any doubts about where “Halfway” is going, the final lines of the melodramatic prologue will confirm your suspicions: “The ticking in her chest tells her it’s too late to stop the countdown. The explosion is overdue. There will be noise and fury. There will be damage. There will be casualties. So here we go.”
      We are introduced in sequence to a cycling cast of characters who tell their story; except for the victims, the survivors and even law enforcement come off as simply nasty or as really bad actors. The location, the description and setting that we usually look for to travel-with-a-book, is limited to snow and cold, broken down farmhouses and wrecked vehicles, a palette of white, black-and-red from all the blood.
      I am not a fan of plot-driven gory stories, with mostly nasty single-dimensional characters, although the atmosphere of cold and dread got to me by the end. Spoiler alert: the one character I thought interesting was a woman simply called “the Hitchhiker” for most of the book. Initially, she seems to have very bad intentions in Pont but as the drama and tension mount, we learn that the hitchhiker, who has been incarcerated and is fleeing a crime scene, is a solid citizen. The scenes of hand-to-hand combat she wages with the villain contrast with the self-promoting policewoman who’s been sent to investigate the murders and is in over her bubble-head.
      Unfortunately Jones chose to give several of her characters a first person point of view, which made for too many similar voices telling extended back stories and dropping red herrings. However, if you’re a fan of noir, by the time you reach the end of “Halfway” –still two days to go to Christmas—you’ll have been kept guessing, tracing reversals and then, at the last, you’ll be treated to all the fury and explosions you were waiting for.

      Barbara L. Baer

      Comment

  14. User: Kathryn (Kate) Timaeus

    Posted on: 30/11/2018 at 12:16 am

    Halfway took a long time to draw me in. The beginning chapters are so fractured and slow burning that I struggled to care – but that changed dramatically in the last third when the sense of unease built and the plot became SO twisty! It’s very well written and I enjoyed how the events came into sharp focus after the deliberate vagueness of the opening. A good piece of plot carpentry. I had no real feeling of Wales in the setting – yes, some names but nothing in the rhythm of the speech or even the description of the rural landscape. I wondered if the writer had Halfway in Carmarthenshire in mind – I didn’t recognise it, although it was buried in snow so pretty well disguised! Thank you for sending me this book, it was worth persevering with.

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 03/12/2018 at 4:09 pm

      Oh good, I am glad it picked up!!! 🙂

      Comment

  15. User: Janine Phillips

    Posted on: 30/11/2018 at 9:25 am

    Just finished, although I thought I wasn’t going to enjoy this at first, after a few chapters I was hooked. Loved it x

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 03/12/2018 at 4:06 pm

      Oh, so glad to hear you were hooked in the end!!

      Comment

  16. User: Claire Broomsgrove

    Posted on: 01/12/2018 at 4:37 pm

    A brilliant winters read, with the snow lying on the ground, the plot twists and turns through out the book, as a reader we are kept entertained by the story being told by the the difference characters although at times it did become a little confusing. It’s suffice to say not everyone appears as they first seem!

    Comment

    1 Comment

    • User: tripfiction

      Posted on: 03/12/2018 at 4:06 pm

      The characters are certainly not as they seem… isn’t the cold (brrrr) atmosphere well portrayed!!

      Comment

  17. User: Denise Price

    Posted on: 04/12/2018 at 5:00 pm

    I found the first few chapters quite slow, and the different voices a little confusing. However I loved the twists in the plot and the way the author built the tension and the description of the snowy landscape, but didn’t get much of a feel for Wales.

    Comment

  18. User: Denise Price

    Posted on: 04/12/2018 at 5:03 pm

    A good thriller with some brilliant twists and a great ending, however would’ve liked more of a sense of being in Wales.

    Comment

  19. User: Caroline J

    Posted on: 05/12/2018 at 9:30 am

    The ending is great but I could easily have given up on the book after the first few pages if I hadn’t felt I had to finish and review it. Given the advertising I was disappointed there wasn’t more of a feel of Wales – I suppose I expected something like the literary version of Hinterland. It was however very good and I was glad I stuck with it.

    Comment

  20. User: Claire Thorpe

    Posted on: 10/12/2018 at 11:53 am

    I have just finished this and thought it was a good dark and twisty thriller! Really enjoyed it and my husband is now reading it

    Comment

Comments

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *