Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes: Rose Gardner Mystery, Book 1 Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
The first book of the New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and USA Today best-selling series!
"Though much of the book is light-hearted and occasionally outright hilarious, the author sneaks in a few home truths along the way that will hit you where it counts, like how even someone’s best intentions can box you in." (Everybody Needs a Little Romance blog)
"This was one of those books that I kept telling myself one more page, then I need to put it down. Instead I found myself tearing through the book instead, needing to know the outcome." (Just Jump Book Reviews)
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 24 years of living and makes a list on the back of a Wal-Mart receipt: 28 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 15 - 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 of 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.
Read & Listen
Get the Audible audiobook for the reduced price of $7.49 after you buy the Kindle book.
- Click above for unlimited listening to select audiobooks, Audible Originals, and podcasts.
- One credit a month to pick any title from our entire premium selection — yours to keep (you'll use your first credit now).
- You will get an email reminder before your trial ends.
- $14.95 a month after 30 days. Cancel online anytime.
People who viewed this also viewed
People who bought this also bought
Related to this topic
|Listening Length||9 hours and 32 minutes|
|Author||Denise Grover Swank|
|Whispersync for Voice||Ready|
|Audible.com Release Date||October 07, 2020|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #29,353 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#365 in Cozy Mysteries (Audible Books & Originals)
#799 in Women Sleuth Mysteries
#977 in Romantic Suspense (Audible Books & Originals)
Reviewed in the United States on February 26, 2018
Reviews with images
Top reviews from the United States
There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.
The first few pages didn't do much to dispel my fears. Rose is the definition of meek. She's nice, polite, and her most offensive expletive is "crappy doodles." She's 24 years old and, when she's not working at her mindless job at the DMV, she's at the beck and call of her religious mother (who is downright abusive and tells Rose she's possessed by the devil because she gets "visions"). While Rose doesn't like her situation, she seemed apathetic to changing it.
If the story continued that way for too long, I wouldn't be saying this: I really liked Twenty-Eight and a Half Wishes. Despite the uncertainty in the first few pages, Grover Swank didn't waste any time allowing Rose to bloom (pun fun).
While at work, Rose gets a vision of herself lying dead on her sofa and faints. Faced with (potentially) her death, she realizes she's never really lived. She stands up to her demanding mother and storms out of the house to cool off. Before she returns, she takes out a Wal*Mart receipt and begins to make a list of things she wants to do before she dies. Commit all the deadly sins in one week, fly in a plane, dance in the rain, visit Italy, drink a beer (is it shocking that the item that made me wince was that she'd never drank a beer?).
When she returns home, she realizes she'll have more time than she thought to check off items on the list. Her vision sort ofcame true, except instead of Rose being on the couch it was her mother.
Unfortunately, gossip spreads fast and the fact that Rose had fought with her mother right before her mother was murdered hasn't gone unnoticed - especially not by the old busybody across the street and the small-town police officers. Not only is Rose a suspect, but it becomes clear the murderer is still after her.
Rose must do her best to keep out of jail and stay alive. After all, she has a list to finish.
Obviously, there's the standard "Woman gets accused of murder. Real killer pursues woman. Police are corrupt/unmotivated. Woman must solve crime to save her life" crime element that is present in so many novels in this genre, but in this circumstance it seemed to serve mostly as a vehicle for Rose's development. And that was a good thing, because Rose really grew on me (I swear that pun was accidental).
Her home life may have kept her naïve and down trodden, but Rose wasn't stupid. Socially awkward? Yes. But that just made her more endearing. It made you want to cheer for Rose - not just to solve the mystery but to experience life. When she got a makeover and purchased some new clothes, I was excited for her. Rose felt like a truly good person and she deserved to feel good about herself!
So much of my enjoyment of this book came from Rose checking things off her list. For example, her sitting on the porch with Joe and discovering beer for the first time (and, the next morning, discovering that beer wasn't her new best friend). Oh, and buying the scandalous nighty at Wal*Mart (which didn't sound all that scandalous)...too funny.
Of course, you can't review one of these books without mentioning the "love interest." Even though I've been loving the hell out of these books (they're a fun way to wrap up my "100 books a year" reading challenge), I'm not a big romance person. I know, I'm probably the only one who reads these kinds of books and feels that way, but I can usually tolerate it as long as it doesn't take over the plot.
I'm happy to say that, in this book, the romance was actually pretty tolerable. Probably because there wasn't a ton of it and, you know, with Rose so innocent and inexperienced, it wasn't going to go all 50 Shades of Grey. Joe was plenty mysterious, but, for the most part, I couldn't help feeling like he was a good guy. It was clear he wanted to keep Rose from getting hurt, but he never tried to make her decisions for her. In fact, he may have been one of the few people in her life that wasn't.
The ending itself wasn't all that shocking, but I barely noticed because of how it ended. Just when I thought Rose and her antics couldn't get any better, they did. I was laughing at one sentence and cheering at the next.
This maybe one of the best (if not top) feel good books I've read. I liked that.
She goes from a servant to her mother and a mousey person to a strong put together person thru lots of tribulation.
Top reviews from other countries
I didn’t expect to enjoy it as much as I did. It was a freebie when I downloaded it (though it’s not anymore), and while I have absolutely LOVED many freebies, I never go into them expecting too much. The synopsis did sound really fun though…
I loved pretty much everything about this book, I’ll be honest. The one (or maybe two?) things I didn’t enjoy so much was that Rose has been raised with such a religious and conservative mother who thinks everything modern is “the gateway to hell”. She’s 24 years old, and she’s under the thumb big time. The second thing, and it’s sort of tied in with the first, is that her mother was so abusive to her when she was growing up. There aren’t any scenes of this nature but there are passing descriptions of it and Rose has clearly been damaged by it. That was really sad, and it seemed to be a theme that kept cropping up.
The rest of the book though, I did enjoy. I liked seeing Rose blossom into her own person, though it took her a while to come out of her shell (I suppose that comes from being repressed her whole life). This book is the first in a series, but it can be read as a stand-alone if you prefer. There wasn’t much detective work from Rose herself (it’s labelled “a Rose Gardner Mystery”), but she’s definitely along for the ride as the truth unfolds, and it’s an interesting outcome, and I would think her detective work comes out more and more with each book in the series anyway. I definitely enjoyed it
TRIGGER WARNINGS ⚠️ child abuse, social rejection
Although the author seems to lose her way a couple of times, I thoroughly enjoyed the read and found it to be one of those books that I looked forward to getting back to. We’ve got Rose Gardner, who’s a bit of a divvy and who has psychic visions of no real importance (until now), and Joe McAllister, who’s a man of the world. Is he a villain? Is he to be trusted? Is he all he makes himself out to be?
Rose is frustratingly stupid. She doesn’t tell Joe about her second break in, which as far as being short-sighted is concerned, is about as daft as she can get. If he was the one who broke in, then he’ll know about it anyway. And if he wasn’t, then he’ll be able to put measures in place to protect her. She doesn’t even tell the police!
Where I lost the story slightly was when Rose has to hand over a flash drive to Daniel Crocker, the villain of the piece, who repulses her. For some unknown reason she finds the need to hang about and snog him, just because he fancies her. For no other reason than that! A more realistic storyline would see her drop the flash drive in his beer, say, “Stuff you,” and walk out of the bar. Instead she hangs around and plays up to him. I failed to understand why.
There’s a bit of a spoiler coming here: In the final scene we find Rose completely outfought, bullied and intimidated by an old lady, even though a little while earlier she’s had a good old tear-up with Crocker. She can stand up to him all right, but not a woman 40 years her senior. It doesn’t make sense.
But all in all it’s a good book, a light read and easy to jump in and out of. I’d recommend it.
Oh, and the twenty eight wishes; they’re a bit of a sub-plot, if you like. Just a bucket list that she dreams up in the beginning of the book after her mother’s murder. It’s worth a read.
Overall, I thought it wasn't worth the read and certainly wouldn't bother with other books written by the same author.
I didn't pay for this book so cannot be too disappointed.
It was certainly a mystery and I was easily drawn into it from the first few chapters. Who'd want to kill a (horrible) old woman? A well known member of the community? I was certainly stumped since I knew it couldn't be Rose, who probably had the motive but was too nice a person.
I really liked both Joe and Rose and was urging them to get together from early on especially when he was being so nice and helpful to her after her mums murder while everyone else treated her like crap. Not the nicest little town to live in.
It wasn't hard to figure something weird was going on with Joe with all his pained looks and disappearing acts and I was intrigued as to what it would be. I wasn't disappointed.
Looking forward to reading more of this series!