Elizabeth Smith, author
By the 1850's over half of America's millionaires lived along the Great River Road, a trail that followed the shifting banks of the Mississippi River from Natchez south to New Orleans, an astonishing distance of less than 180 miles. Many of these prosperous plantation homes still survive today. While some have been restored to their original grandeur, others like French Crossing, are barely standing, their splendor so precarious that their very essence seems to fade and crumble with each passing day. So it is along this winding road that Ryann McKenna lives. While she longs for excitement and adventure, the reality for this young teacher is that she is saddled with a beautiful but decaying plantation named French Crossing and a mother who, dreamlike, sees life only through the gauzy curtains of an upstairs bedroom. All that changes when Pacific Studios selects French Crossing, as a filming location for the movie, Killer Instinct. Finally, the excitement Ryann craves has arrived—and his name is Jordan Cade. Ready to play, Jordan targets Ryann in his quest for casual sex. After all, she’s pretty and available. But Ryann knows he’s only interested in an on-location romance. That’s the stuff of Hollywood—not her small town existence. Even though she realizes that none of this will last, Ryann decides to enjoy Jordan’s attention along with the excitement “the movie people” have brought to French Crossing. But things become complicated when Jordan’s beautiful co-star, Marisa Holland, arrives. The obvious hostility between Jordan and Marisa, the result of a past relationship, rubs off on the film crew, causing dramatic changes on the set. Then one night Marisa suddenly vanishes, and when the evidence left behind leads everyone to believe she’s been murdered, Jordan becomes the prime suspect. What follows is the story of greed, murder, and a sizzling romance set along the banks of the lower Mississippi River and the ghostly shadows of French Crossing.