For Rose Gardner, working at the DMV on a Friday afternoon is bad even before she sees a vision of herself dead. She's had plenty of visions, usually boring ones like someone's toilet's overflowed, but she's never seen one of herself before. When her overbearing momma winds up murdered on her sofa instead, two things are certain: there isn't enough hydrogen peroxide in the state of Arkansas to get that stain out, and Rose is the prime suspect. Rose realizes she's wasted twenty-four years of living and makes a list on the back of a Wal-Mart receipt: twenty-eight things she wants to accomplish before her vision comes true. She's well on her way with the help of her next door neighbor Joe, who has no trouble teaching Rose the rules of drinking, but won't help with number fifteen -- do more with a man. Joe's new to town, but it doesn't take a vision for Rose to realize he's got plenty secrets of his own. Somebody thinks Rose has something they want and they'll do anything to get it. Her house is broken into, someone else she knows is murdered, and suddenly, dying a virgin in the Fenton County jail isn't her biggest worry after all.Pages: 288
Published by Crooked Lane Books Genres: Contemporary, Cozy, Fiction, Mystery & Detective, Romance, Women Sleuths
I had the pleasure of meeting Denise in St. Louis at PennedCon this year. After I listened to her keynote speech I just knew I had to read one of her books. She spoke with such passion, not only for her writing, but also for her life that the entire audience was brought to tears. When I started reading this book I was hooked. I love a great mystery. I always feel like I can figure things out, but I never can.
“Trust was a tricky thing. Usually the perosn asking for the trust had to prove they were worthy to receive it.”
This is a great southern romance/suspense. It made me feel a little nostalgic for the Sookie Stackhouse series which is one of my favorites, minus the werewolves and vampires. Just the feel of the small southern town and a lovable but sometimes clueless heroine. We watch Rose grow from a virtual doormat/punching bag to a woman who is not afraid to stand up for herself. Sure, she still needs a lot of help, and some rescuing but she comes a long way in a short amount of time. The author does a great job of keeping you suspicious of everyone, even Rose, until the end.
And holy hell what a cliffhanger of an ending. I need the rest of this series ASAP! This would be a great read for a lazy fall Sunday. It’s a suspense/mystery but it’s also fun and smart at the same time. Seeing as this was the authors debut novel I can only imagine how good the rest of her books are!
4.5 stars and some shots of tequila! Enjoy!
Buy Denise Grover Swanks Books
Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes – http://amzn.to/1Nv0x69
Twenty-Nine and a Half Reasons – http://amzn.to/1Mf9dMt
Thirty and a Half Excuses – http://amzn.to/1NGFPls