By Charles Deemer
On the day after the Bicentennial, the body of an old man is discovered hanging from a tree in a park in Hamartin, a small farming community in central Oregon. A homophobic note is attached to the man’s body. The shocking story makes the national news wire.
Shandy Anderson, a young artist, hears the story on the morning TV news during her move from Hamartin’s small-town boredom to an exciting new life in San Francisco. She knows the old man, Emmett Hale, whose generous gift of money made her escape possible—and who had paid her for sex. But how can he be the victim of a homophobic crime if he isn’t a homosexual? And why would he be murdered when everyone in town knew he had terminal cancer? Shandy decides to return home not only for Emmett’s funeral but to find out what really happened.
Emmett’s Gift is a literary novel of suspense, and the story of a young woman’s coming of age against the backdrop of small town bigotry and personal sexual experimentation.