A grumpy middle-aged woman, Loretta Sage, writes romance-adventure novels centered on a fictional heroine, Dr. Angela Lovemore, and her romantic interest, Dash McMahon. To promote the latest Lovemore book, her publisher, Beth Hatten, insists that Loretta embark on a book tour with Alan Caprison, the book's cover model for Dash, despite her reclusiveness after her husband's death.After a disastrous start, mostly due to the fans' obsession with Alan's Dash persona, Loretta is kidnapped by billionaire Abigail Fairfax, who realizes that Loretta based her books on actual historical research she did with her late archaeologist husband. Fairfax has discovered a lost city on a remote Atlantic island and is convinced that the Crown of Fire, a priceless treasure, is located there. When she declines to help decipher an ancient map to the treasure, Fairfax, fearing an active volcano will destroy the site, has Loretta chloroformed and takes her to the island.

Alan, who is secretly enamored with Loretta, witnesses her being kidnapped. He recruits Jack Trainer, a former Navy SEAL turned CIA operative, and meets with him on the island to coordinate a rescue. With no assistance from Alan, Jack breaches Fairfax's compound and frees Loretta. As the trio attempt to flee, a gunfight ensues and Jack is apparently shot dead. Loretta and Alan escape into the jungle.The two spend a day fighting off Fairfax's henchmen before reaching a nearby village. Upon hearing a local sing a folk song, Loretta deduces that the crown is hidden in a cenote in the jungle. Before they can leave however, Fairfax again captures Loretta; Alan chases them on a motorcycle but he is also caught. Fairfax forces the two to reveal the treasure's location.