Cover image for Causes of action : a Claude McCutcheon novel
Causes of action : a Claude McCutcheon novel
Miller, John A., 1946-
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Publication Information:
New York : Pocket Books, [1999]

Physical Description:
247 pages ; 23 cm
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Thirty years after they served together in Vietnam, Jesse Hamilton reaches out to maverick lawyer Claude McCutcheon for help when he discovers some disturbing facts about the computer company he works for. Now Claude must follow a deadly trail to uncover the truth.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Claude McCutcheon isn't the "dad" type. He's a Berkeley, California, lawyer who doesn't do much lawyering, likes the occasional lady, but otherwise leads a solitary life. Then old Vietnam platoon-mate Jesse Hamilton leaves his four-year-old son on Claude's doorstep. Claude's search for the missing Jesse leads him to Sentinel Microsystems, which claims Jesse stole information from them. The company--in the person of security chief Barton Jones--will do what it takes to find Hamilton. The threat is obvious, but Sentinel is mistaken if it thinks it can scare Claude off. He's much tougher than his debonair demeanor indicates, smarter than he lets on, and more loyal to his Vietnam partners than anyone could fathom. The second McCutcheon novel (following Cutdown, 1997) is a carefully plotted, character-driven thriller with generous doses of humor and a memorable conclusion. --Wes Lukowsky

Publisher's Weekly Review

Claude McCutcheon (Cutdown), a lawyer with his own small practice in the East Bay town of Albany, Calif., finds a child dumped on his doorstep. The abandoned boy is a quiet four-year-old named Earl, whose father, Jesse Hamilton, was in Claude's platoon in Vietnam. Jesse is in serious trouble. Although he hasn't seen Claude in more than 30 years, he has decided that Claude is the only person he can trust with his son. Claude knows that he must track Jesse down by locating his more recent associates, including several of the other men from the platoon; as he does, dreadful memories of war haunt him. Jesse, Claude learns, had been working for a Silicon Valley firm called Sentinel Microsystems. For a high-tech company, Sentinel employs some awfully vicious thugs. Apparently, Jesse had something on a computer disk that they want back. They believe that Claude now has the disk‘and they aim to retrieve it. Miller's plot isn't entirely fresh, nor is his Vietnam-revisited theme. He's strong on atmosphere, however ("Dawn eased over the East Bay hills like year-old motor oil draining slowly out of a crankcase"), and Claude makes for an appealingly moody hero who harbors hidden depths beneath his roiled surface. (Jan.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

Having won the 1996 California Book Award for First Published Work of Fiction, Miller gets to prove his staying power with this new work. Like his first novel, Cutdown, it features Vietnam vet Claude McCutcheon, who suddenly finds himself in charge of an army buddy's four-year-old son. From there it's one quick step to investigating strange doings at the Silicon Valley company where the boy's father works. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.