Full Name: Denise Cleever
Nationality: Australian
Organization: ASIO
Occupation Agent

Creator: Claire McNab
Time Span: 1999 - 2005

       Denise Cleever works for the Australian Security Intelligence Organization.
       This agency has as its primary duty counter-espionage. The work usually entails going undercover, a task in which Cleever has shown a particular talent. Comparable, at least in this series, to America's FBI and England's MI-5, the agents of the ASIO monitor fringe groups, suspected terrorists, and subversive organizations plotting overthrow or mass destruction. They also crack spy rings and monitor security operations to keep Australian secrets where they belong.
       Cleever has been an agent for only a short time at the start of this three-book series. She had undergone extensive training and received good reports in all fields. She knows how to handle a gun and how to handle herself in a physical confrontation but she lacks experience in both, making her nervous about both. It doesn't stop her from doing her job but an occasional gulp is not out of the ordinary. Unlike most agents, however, her cases have thus far entailed her going undercover, working alone, which tasks her training considerably, not to mention her nerve. Cleever is still quite young, probably in her mid 20s, and having to be amidst killers and extremists with now ready backup proves understandably tasking.
       Of her personal life, little is specified other than she is blonde, though she has dyed her hair for at least one mission, very attractive and alluring, and has a wry sense of humor. She had considerable respect for those who have trained her but not a lot for other authority figures. She has no steady relationship and does not seem too bothered by it. Being lesbian she notices other women but none have made a lasting enough impression to form a bond with.


Number of Books:6
First Appearance:1999
Last Appearance:2005

1 Murder Undercover Murder Undercover
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 1999

Undercover as a bartender in a bar on a resort paradise, Denise Cleever learns that a known terrorist named Red Wolf was planning the killing of the visiting President.

2 Death Understood Death Understood
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 2000

The brother-sister head of a powerful, ultra-conservative think tank have something to hide and Denise Cleever is sent to find out what it is. She soon learns it is likely safer alone in the Outback than in their clutches.

3 Out Of Sight Out Of Sight
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 2001

The only way to break up a terrorist ring operating in a remote region of Australia is to infiltrate it and destroy from inside. When Denise Cleever's final rite of initiation is to kill an innocent, she must decide whose life is more important.

4 Recognition Factor Recognition Factor
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 2002

The international terrorist Red Wolf has never been photographed and no one outside his own gang has seen him and lived, except Cleever. When it is suspected he is in the US to launch an attack, she is asked to help locate him.

5 Death By Death Death By Death
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 2003

A British woman hugs an American senator as the bomb strapped to her body goes off. In Paris, a woman stabs a noted French official and then brutally kills herself. Both women are patients of the same psychiatrist. Cleever must become one of his patients to learn what is going on.

6 Murder At Random Murder At Random
Written by Claire McNab
Copyright: 2005

Cleever is ordered to infiltrate a terrorist gang whose method of spreading panic is to hire independent contract killers to perform a random act of mayhem. The gang does not care who or where the victims are as long as the crimes are sensational and brutal.


       Despite the fact that not a lot of information about the character is given, which really does hurt the series, the writing is excellent and the stories are fast-paced and worth reading. Ms. McNab knows how to tell a story, proven by the successful mystery series she also wrote. This three-book series is a departure for her in that the character is a undercover agent instead of a detective but the adventures are mostly mystery in nature so the author really is not out of her element.
       The character Cleever shows a great deal of spunk. More than once you read about her heading down a path or preparing to open a door, you know she has to do it to perform her job, but you know it is not a good idea. And soon so does she.


My Grade: B+

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