Sawyer Hayes needs to finish his PhD thesis after a year's absence from mourning the death of his sister. His hope lies in proving that his grandmother's old films are original Oscar Micheaux's. The last living link to the film is 110 year old Honoree Dalcour. Sawyer needs to interview her for his thesis, but Sawyer will have to prove his worth in her eyes in order to hear about Honoree's life among the legends of 1920's Chicago.
Wild Women and the Blues drops into jazz age Chicago, specifically Bronzeville representing the African American experience during this time period. Honoree's story is one of loss, heartbreak, and danger, but also one of hope and the promise of freedom. We are introduced to Sawyer first, however most of the story is from Honoree's point of view with several intermittent chapters that bring the point of view back to the present. I was completely wrapped up in Honoree's point of view from her youth. Her personality is rough and crude, but she knows what she wants and gets it done. The writing brought alive the Dreamland Café with glittering costumes, rowdy customers and free flowing bootleg whiskey. Honoree definitely lived a wild life as a dancer who cavorted with Louis Armstrong, Oscar Micheaux and Capone's gang. The mystery that ran through Honoree's story was enticing, her secrets run deep and were teased out slowly.