Carlos Acuna retires early from the FBI to pursue his interest in photography. In Big Sur he finds a mentor in Joel Shaw, a master landscape photographer. When Shaw's lab assistant dies in a fall, Carlos investigates and finds evidence of art fraud and a possible link to the death. Shaw vanishes soon after during a photographic trek to Mexico, and Carlos is sent to find him. During his search he encounters Mexican organized crime figures, unravels a mystery involving a famous Mexican photographer of the 1920s, and discovers an art fraud conspiracy going back a century. Complications ensue when Shaw's patron and lover discovers the truth and Carlos must extricate her from a murder charge in Mexico.