Sixteen-year-old Nostalgia Richardson has lived all her life in the rural township of Spivey’s Grove, South Carolina, but that has not stopped her from dreaming of running away to Harlem to become a showgirl at the world famous Cotton Club. One night when she comes home from work she finds her father in the company of Noah Holdtstaff, the most notorious bootlegger in town. Later, Nostalgia’s 14-year- old sister, LILY, divulges their father’s plans to marry her off to the 49-year-old Noah.
To escape the ominous fate, Nostalgia goes to work as usual the next day, scheming to sneak off to the bus station to leave for New York City. Just prior to her audition for The Cotton Club, Nostalgia learns there was money involved in the deal their father made with Noah, forcing Lily to marry the miscreant instead. From 1928-1935, Nostalgia and Lily communicate with each other through a series of letters in which Nostalgia lives the glamorous life hobnobbing with the talented elite of the Harlem Renaissance. Lily, fueled by her ardent affair with milkman Henry Whit, uses Noah’s love for pig’s feet and penchant for hustling reefer to concoct a scheme to absolve her dreadful marriage. Set against the backdrop of the Jim Crow south, and the Great Depression, these two spunky heroines are determined to live, love, and excel on their own terms!