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If you are a fly fisherman, it doesn’t get any better than the salmon fly hatch on the Deschutes River, Oregon’s legendary trout fishing venue. Cal Claxton–a small town lawyer who works to fish–has to pinch himself when his best friend and fishing guide, Philip Lone Deer, asks him to help guide an upcoming trip with a group of executives from a high tech firm in Portland. But the trip through the remote Deschutes River Canyon turns ugly when a member of the fishing party turns up murdered. Everyone in the party is a suspect, including Cal himself. Does the fact that the company’s value is about to explode play into the crime? And what about the freight line running along the river. Does Philip’s theory that the killer came and left on a train hold water? Cal better come up with answers because he’s suspect number one…
Cal Claxton is determined to reinvent himself as a small town lawyer in the aftermath of his wife’s suicide. Once a hardcharging L.A. prosecutor, he now lives in an old farmhouse overlooking the Oregon wine country. When a scruffy, tattooed kid shows up asking for help in solving his mother’s cold case murder, Cal wants to say no. But the kid, who calls himself Picasso, has ridden a bike from Portland, and something about his determination touches Cal.
It turns out Picasso is a gifted artist. He’s also one of the legions of street kids who are drawn to Portland’s Old Town. A reluctant Cal finds Picasso painting a mural on the side of a health clinic run by an idealistic doctor. Then Picasso is charged with the murder of a major business figure. The evidence is overwhelming. Suddenly Cal finds himself back in the game, pitted against the police, the media, and some of Portland’s most powerful citizens.
Is Picasso being framed? And if so, is there a connection between the murder of his mom and this new killing?