Saxophonist Nanette Hayes, a majestic five-foot-ten-inch Grace Jones lookalike with hot style, lives for the music of her jazz forebears. Self-taught Nan is no Charlie Parker, but she dreams big. She performs regularly - on the sidewalks of New York City. Not exactly the Village Vanguard, but it pays the bills in ways that her master’s degree in French does not. Mostly Nanette just tries to stay cool in the face of the worst kinds of hardship.
Nanette Hayes, a high-styling, saxophone-playing street musician and reluctant amateur detective, is in a slump. Deep in the throes of a postaffair depression, Nanette is busy drowning her sorrows in bourbon and making enemies. To boot, her breakup has a body count. The son of a high-bourgeois doctor, a hip-hopster wannabe, is just one of the fatalities. With no zest for life and no taste for new adventures, heartbroken Nanette is at rock bottom when she receives a gift from sweet old Ida Williams - a crazy-looking voodoo doll named Mama Lou.
When Nanette's overprotective mother tells her that her glamorous, bohemian auntie Vivian has gone missing in France under mysterious circumstances, Nanette is dispatched to Paris to help. Paris - her favorite city! Nan has to keep her focus on the mystery at hand and not on the coq au vin and Veuve Clicquot and jazz clubs. But the vibrant scene turns out to be the very thing that leads her deep into the underbelly of historic Paris, the crux of her aunt's disappearance, a twenty-year-old murder - and a sexy duet with Andre, a gifted violinist and fellow street musician from Detroit.
Cassandra, grandniece to Woodson and Ivy Lisle, is a college student caught up in the highly charged atmosphere of the days following the assassination of Martin Luther King, Jr. When the granddaughter of Woodson and Ivy's friends goes missing, Cassandra is sucked into a dangerous mystery that threatens to expose long-buried secrets and jeopardize the life of anyone who asks too many questions.