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Full Name: Dick Thornby
Nationality: American
Organization: The Subsidiary
Occupation Agent

Creator: Donald J. Bingle
Time Span: 2018 - 2021


Dick Thornby is an agent with the Subsidiary.

If you haven't heard of that organization, you should consider yourself lucky. The Subsidiary is considered, by the very few who know of its existence, "the most secret of all the secret espionage agencies in the world". Heading the outfit is Dee Tammany, a tough-as-nails former agent herself who could hold her own with most even considering she had reached an age where most field agents considered retirement.

You might have heard of Catalyst Crisis Consulting, the legitimate front for the group, a management consulting company which "provided an extensive menu of analytical and security services to companies, governments, and wealthy individuals around the world". Being a real for-profit business, it had true reasons for sending personnel all over the globe which in turn meant it had actual, verifiable covers for its agents.

Thornby is one of those agents and to the outside world, that means he goes who knows where at a moment's notice to help solve an emergency. The types of troubles he actually confronts, however, are far from what normal people would imagine. Instead of handling a stalled negotiation or a broken remote sanitation system, Thornby and his fellow agents deal with international terrorism and dangers that could bring down governments. He has been doing it for a lot of years and he is very good at his job, if you overlook his perceived inclination to blow things up a lot.

But for all his successes and his experience, one thing Thornby is not is someone you might think of as a super-spy. He is not glamorous or dashing or casting off rejected lovers right and left while sipping an exotic drink at a casino. He looks and acts like an average guy which is one of the ways he has been able to live and work as long as he has.

In keeping with being average, Thornby has a wife named Melanie whom he still loves and who he hopes still loves him though that relationship has soured a good deal over the years thanks to his sudden departures. He has a teenage son, Seth, who, as a young boy, thought the world of his dad but now that he has moved past puberty is pulling further and further away and Thornby has no idea how to deal with it. Having a family provides him an added incentive to do what he does but also weighs on him knowing that each mission draws him that much more out of their lives.


Number of Books:3
First Appearance:2018
Last Appearance:2021

1 Net Impact Net Impact
Written by Donald J. Bingle
Copyright: 2018

A young computer geek at headquarters has discovered a huge conspiracy combining elements from all over the globe working towards a very unpleasant end. Dick Thornby finds that to take on this new threat, he has to take under his wing the youngster and hope that together they can survive.
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2 Wet Work Wet Work
Written by Donald J. Bingle
Copyright: 2018

While working to rekindle his marriage, Dick Thornby faces difficulties because his latest mission, looking into a series of highly suspicious brake failures on new cars, has him teamed with a young and very sexy young agent.
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3 Flash Drive Flash Drive
Written by Donald J. Bingle
Copyright: 2021

When the Subsidiary, employer of agent Dick Thornby, discovers that Thornby's family now know the truth of his employment, he is instructed to take that family along with him on his latest mission. That assignment is to look into what caused a mysterious flash in the Australian Outback. This means that Thornby must not only keep himself safe from the other foreign agents in the area as well as a strange Japanese cult, he must make sure his family stays safe as well.
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I love a good adventure and I certainly get one in this series. Well, since there are two books as I write this, I get two adventures since the first and second books are quite a bit different, as one would hope. What stays the same is that Thornby remains an very solid, enjoyable operative who does not look like a spy but he sure succeeds like one.

In a spy novel I look for either excitement or suspense. There is seldom a lot of both. One aspect must prevail. It is excitement that wins out in this series and it does so wonderfully. I know going into a problem that Thornby will use his honed skills and natural talents and seasoned brain to figure a way out and he does. Usually with a good explosion or two which is fun to read and would be great to watch on the screen. I especially enjoyed the fact that the author let us in on Thornby's reasoning so it all makes sense.

I have a lot of hope that the author will keep bringing us Dick Thornby tales. If so, I will keep buying and reading them. Nice arrangement, don't you think?


My Grade: A-


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