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Wild Women & the Blues - Review

*I received this E-Arc from NetGalley & Kensington. All views expressed are my own.*

I'm beginning to like the Roaring Twenties-themed books. Though this is only my second time reading something of this era, it's something about it that makes me wish to go back in time and witness it myself. With this new book, Wild Women & the Blues, written by Denny S. Bryce, I get a duel-bending storyline that places me back in time.

"1925: Chicago is the jazz capital of the world, and the Dreamland Café is the ritziest black-and-tan club in town. Honoree Dalcour is a sharecropper’s daughter, willing to work hard and dance every night on her way to the top. Dreamland offers a path to the good life, socializing with celebrities like Louis Armstrong and filmmaker Oscar Micheaux. But Chicago is also awash in bootleg whiskey, gambling, and gangsters. And a young woman driven by ambition might risk more than she can stand to lose.
2015: Film student Sawyer Hayes arrives at the bedside of 110-year-old Honoree Dalcour, still reeling from a devastating loss that has taken him right to the brink. Sawyer has rested all his hope on this frail but formidable woman, the only living link to the legendary Oscar Micheaux. If he’s right—if she can fill in the blanks in his research, perhaps he can complete his thesis and begin a new chapter in his life. But the links Honoree makes are not ones he’s expecting . . .
Piece by piece, Honoree reveals her past and her secrets, while Sawyer fights tooth and nail to keep his. It’s a story of courage and ambition, hot jazz and illicit passions. And as past meets present, for Honoree, it’s a final chance to be truly heard and seen before it’s too late. No matter the cost . . ."

Would you believe the setting takes place around the same time as E.W. Cooper's The Jade Tiger? Yep, this is a shameless plug to get you to check out The Litt Librarian more! It's interesting to see two different viewpoints of how the world was on different sides of the track. In The Jade Tiger, we have operatic drama, Wild Women & the Blues has jazz club spectacles that will keep you on the edge of your seat.

The story shares duel timelines – Sawyer Hayes and Honoree Delacour. Sawyer is a film student wishing to get information on found footage from the late filmmaker, the legendary Oscar Micheaux, and believes Honoree is one of the spotted chorus girls in the reel. These two's personality trait clashes from the start. TO ME (and I cannot stress that enough), Sawyer, who is still grieving his sister's death, comes off as childish and a wee bit selfish about finishing his film project, while Honoree is brash and as stubborn as a mule. I didn't care too much about Sawyer's story, being that it was undeveloped, but the star of the show was all about Honoree!

Flashing back on the life of Honoree, we're introduced to some characters that made an impact on her life. One of them is her childhood boo, Ezekiel Bailey. I would have like to see more between Honoree and Ezekiel. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the story not revolving around Honoree being stuck under him, but as strong as their chemistry was, I thought they would have made things work together.

There are areas in the writing that felt incomplete. I don't want to give too much away, but some actions had me questioning why it was done in the first place. When the truths came out, there wasn't an explanation reasoning how we got here. It disappointed me that I couldn't answer all of my questions from this standalone book.

Overall, I rated this 4-stars. It's a pretty good read with a surprising mystery that you would've never guessed. I enjoyed it, and I think you will too. Wild Women & the Blues is available on March 30th.

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