In my fourth Daisy Dalrymple mystery, Murder on the Flying Scotsman, Daisy’s ten-year-old stepdaughter-to-be (i.e., DCI Alec Fletcher’s daughter, Belinda) makes friends with an elderly man in the train and later finds him dead. She also finds a clue to how he died, though she doesn’t realize it. She’s important to the story in Styx and Stones, and again in Mistletoe and Murder, where she and her cousin Derek go hunting for clues in the woods and discover an ancient corset (which, however, turns out not to be a clue, to their disappointment!).
Belinda plays a part in several other books, notably Anthem for Doomed Youth, which is set partly at her boarding school. One of her school friends finds a body in that one. The cover shows Daisy calling the girls, who are lost in a maze. (The only cover that shows Belinda, with a friend, is Fall of a Philanderer.)
Some readers are disappointed when she’s missing for too long, and I get requests to put her in the next of the series.
Many of my Regencies also include children. The heroines of both Lavender Lady and Ginnie Come Lately, for instance, have large families of siblings. It’s an interesting challenge to differentiate them with age-appropriate speech and behaviour.
In the second and third books of my trilogy that starts with Miss Jacobson’s Journey, there’s a little half-Spanish girl who is three years old. The original paperback cover of Lord Roworth’s Reward had an adorable picture of her. Captain Ingram’s Inheritance takes place a few weeks later; in the meantime, if you judge by the cover, she has aged by about 5 years and bleached her hair. Ugh!!
|Carola Dunn is author of the Daisy Dalrymple Mysteries, Cornish Mysteries, and multitudinous Regencies.|