Standing at the Scratch Line

The story opens in 1916 in the steamy bayous of Louisiana. Young LeRoi "King" Tremain and his uncle Jake attempt a raid on a rival family's compound. In doing so, Jake dies, but not before LeRoi kills two corrupt white deputies. Forced by his family to leave everything he knows until the heat dies down, LeRoi embarks on a vivid adventure that first takes him to France during World War I, where he finds it is just as easy to kill vicious, bigoted U.S. soldiers as it is to kill Germans. Dubbed "le Roi du Mort" -- the king of death -- by the French because of his coldhearted, machinistic killing on the battlefield, King returns to America an ambitious man. Driven to create a family dynasty much like the one he was forced to leave, he battles the Mob in Jazz Age Harlem, fights the Ku Klux Klan in Louisiana, and outwits crooked politicians trying to control a black township in Oklahoma. Those who cross him are left bloodied, bruised, or dead. Along the way, he marries Serena Baddeaux, a woman strong enough to stand by King's side, and who matches his determination, courage, and grit. Though more concerned with skin color and social standing than with the truth, she nonetheless knows no boundaries when it comes to protecting her family.

Author of Standing at the Scratch Line