BARCLAY & NEILSON

 
Full Name: Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson
Nationality: American
Organization: ATF
Occupation Agent

Creator: Daniel Adams
Time Span: 2012 - 2017
ABOUT THE SERIES

       Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson are agents with the ATF.
       The Alcolhol, Tobacco, and Firearms Bureau, being a national police organization dealing with the legal trafficing in these products, often finds considerable involvement on the international scene, especially with the Mexican border and the drug cartels. For Barclay and Neilson, their activities go far beyond that on a routine basis and they find themselves going up against terrorists, homegrown and imported, intrigue, and even a spot of two seconded to the CIA.
       Barclay is described as a tall, lean, dark-haired man with "sturdy build of a long-time weight lifter". If you asked him, he would say his head was odd-shaped, his ears even odder, and the rest of him nothing to talk well of. If you asked the few women he had dated, they would say call him handsome.
       Before the ATF he had been an FBI agent for a number of years but was fired for insubordination, a trait that he still holds and practices but either with less a degree or his bosses at the ATF were not so deserving of his biting wit. His professional track record is very good with a considerable number of arrests but the first recorded mission was the biggest thing to happen to him during his 10 years of service.
       Things tend to blow up around troy and cars are never safe when he is inside them, especially if he is behind the wheel. The mishaps are usually not his fault but he is undoubtedly a damage magnet. When not on duty, Barclay lives on a small ranch in southern Arizona, a place he loves to get back to.
       Neilson is medium height (5'7-5'8"), lean, with dark hair. around 25 yrs old. When she first runs into Barclay he noticed that she tended to dress severely giving her a mannish look but when in civilian attire, she was a knock-out.
       In their first case together, she was an agent of the FBI but forced to work as a gofer for a senior agent, the punishment for an incident at the start of her career. Fresh out of the Academy, she had been told to stay with the cars while the other agents conducted a raid. While doing so, she was visited by a large group of gangbangers who tried to vandalize the cars. She put ten of them in the hospital with a lot of broken bones but, a victim of political correctness, she was pulled from street duty and was largely considered a pariah soon to be discharged.
       They met when the murder of the First Lady resulted in a task force being created to find the killers. Barclay was the representative from the ATF and Neilson was the "assistant" to the ranking FBI agent. After a cold moment of two when they first met, they quickly learned they worked well together and made an impressive team.
       Both are black belts in karate and each is an excellent shot, as would be expected with the ATF but Neilson might be a bit better. They both can more than take care of themselves in combat and each has the scars to prove they would never think of running from an altercation.
       As the series progresses, their relationship develops nicely.

BOOKS

Number of Books:16
First Appearance:2012
Last Appearance:2017

       For a while, the numbering scheme was missing #4 as the author said he started it and decided against finishing it. A few years later, he put out a book in the slot.

1 First Lady Down First Lady Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2012

The death of the First Lady by a sniper bullet was a tragedy since the target was the President. Or was it? Troy Barclay has his doubts and FBI agent Amber Neilson is in agreement with him.

2 President Down President Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2013

Saving the life of the President brings Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson to his attention and he asks them to investigate a series of murders of women over many years, each woman known by the President.

3 Hostage Down Hostage Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2013

A nut-job named Mayhew, leading a band of terrorists, kidnap fifty students and faculty and others demanding a large ransom but with another agenda. One of the others is Troy Barclay. Working from the outside is Amber Neilson determined to find out what is really going on.

4 Fantasmas Down Fantasmas Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2016

The Fantasmas is a Mexican arms cartel. They recently learned where an informant was hiding and have sent a dozen killers to snatch him and his family. The informant had been working with Amber Neilson and now she and Troy Barclay are out to help him.

5 Nuke Down Nuke Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2013

Troy Barclay witnesses a plane crash in the mountains and discovers while investigating that it contained a suitcase nuke which is now active. It had been in the possession of Al-Qaeda and they want it back.

6 Flag Ship Down Flag Ship Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2014

On a vacation aboard a cruise liner, Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson's R&R turns into dangerous work when the ship hits a freighter running dark at night and that vessel has over a $1 billion in cocaine on it. The captain of the cruise ship "rescues" the crew of the other ship. Bad move.

7 First Kid Down First Kid Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2014

On a trip to the Grand Canyon guarded by Secret Service agents, the son of the current President vanishes. When hours go by without finding him, the First Lady insists the President bring in ATF agents Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson, two "outsiders" who are decidedly less than welcome.

8 Sleeper Down Sleeper Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2014

A CIA mole inside Russia's GRU who is now being sought by that organization. Attempts by the Agency to get his out have failed and the Director asks Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson to lend their hands.

9 Puppet Master Down Puppet Master Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2015

Trying to help Troy Barclay escape the Russians after him, Amber Neilson is herself captured by the GRU. That bureau's Director plans to use her in his attempt to take over the country.

10 Invisible Man Down Invisible Man Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2015

Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson cannot get to New York fast enough when they learn a detective has a murder investigation that is likely connected to the Invisible Man, a master killer they want very much to see.

11 Jane Doe Down Jane Doe Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2015

The death of a Navajo woman by a train is being covered up by the local police in Arizona until her mother appeals for help from Chet Franklin and he assigns his two best agents, Barclay and Neilson, to look into it.

12 Tramp Down Tramp Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2015

A gorgeous white woman comes to the Indian Reservation to work on her PhD but trouble just escalates until it is necessary for the ATF to look into things.

13 Armored Car Down Armored Car Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2015

A 32-ton armored truck with 8 tons of gold headed to Fort Knox. It had four armored SUVs filled with guards accompanying it. It disappeared. Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson decide to take a peek into the case.

14 SuperMax Down SuperMax Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2016

Crescent City Supermax Prison was one of the hardest places to get into and out of but mercenaries with armored vehicles got in and took out a killer named Hux Marsh. Barclay and Neilson get involved in the case because it had been Barclay who put Marsh away the first time.

15 Vatican Down Vatican Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2016

The price tag on the Vatican artwork that seven masked men stole was well over $1 billion. They also snatched a ton of secret documents the Church would not want revealed. The President wants to help but cannot do so officially so he asks Barclay and Neilson to do so.

16 First Twin Down First Twin Down
Written by Daniel Adams
Copyright: 2017

The visitor in the middle of the night was the President needing their help but quietly. He tells them he has a twin brother who was a con in a Texas prison until he disappeared. The President is afraid the sibling might have been kidnapped and wants Troy Barclay and Amber Neilson to find him.

MY COMMENTS

       Over the many years of modern fiction, both printed and telecast, there have been a good collection of man-and-woman partnerships and to that we can certainly add Barclay and Neilson. I at first thought about comparing them to Hammett's Nick and Nora but then realized that was really far off and a closer comparison would be to Hart & Hart (Robert Wagner and Stephanie Powers). Both halves of the team are extremely capable of taking care of him/herself and does so on more than one occassion but both are even better when teamed with the other.
       The writing is an easy, loping style with descriptions quick and simple so you see the scene without it dominating which for these books is needed because the pleasure of these light adventures is the interactions of both characters with each other and with the many other interesting people they meet.
       Lots of the situations are hardly plausible but you will not care. Many of the powers-that-be are way past disreputable and that can be a little disconcerting but Barclay and Neilson will often see things right.

GRADE

My Grade: B

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