• Sports agent and detective Myron Bolitar watches the U.S. Open Golf Tournament at Merion Golf Course in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
• An elderly man named Stone "Bucky" Buckwell approaches Myron about becoming the sports agent for his daughter and her husband in return for help with another matter. Both Jack and Linda Coldren are professional golfers.
• Myron meets Linda as she watches the television coverage of her husband leading the U.S. Open Tournament.
• Twenty-three years ago, Jack had played in the U.S. Open but choked at the end of the tournament. His golf career has been lackluster ever since.
• Linda tells Myron that their sixteen-year-old son Chad has been kidnapped.
• Chad has been away from home for two days and Linda assumes that he is with his friend, Matt Squires.
• Myron wonders if Chad is behind his own kidnapping but Linda is sure he is...
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