Daddy's Little Girl (novel)

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Daddy's Little Girl (novel)
Author Mary Higgins Clark
Country United States
Language English
Genre Suspense, Tragedy
Publisher Simon & Schuster
Publication date
Pages 291 (including the epilogue)
ISBN 0-7432-0604-5

Daddy's Little Girl is a 2002 novel written by author Mary Higgins Clark. It is Clark's twenty-sixth published novel. The novel revolves around a dark and chilling story of murder, and its effects years later on the man convicted of the crime and the woman who helped convict him. It takes the reader to the heights of suspense while exploring the depths of the criminal mind.

Plot: Ellie Cavanaugh was only seven years old when her fifteen-year-old sister, Andrea, was murdered near their home in Oldham-on-the-Hudson, a rural village in Westchester County, New York. There were three suspects: Rob Westerfield, nineteen-year-old scion of a wealthy, prominent family whom Andrea had been secretly dating; Paul Stroebel,a sixteen-year-old schoolmate, who had a crush on Andrea; Will Nebels,a local handyman in his forties. It was Ellie who had led her parents to a hide-out in which Andrea's body was found-a secret hideaway in which she met her friends. And it was Ellie who was blamed by her parents for her sister's death for not telling them about this place the night Andrea was missing. It was also Ellie's testimony that led to the conviction of the man she was firmly convinced was the killer. Steadfastly denying his guilt, he spent next twenty-two years in prison.

When he comes up for parole, Ellie now an investigative reporter for an Atlanta newspaper, protests his release. Nonetheless, the convicted killer is set free and returns in Oldham. Determined to thwart his attempts to whitewash his reputation, Ellie also returns to Oldham intent on creating a website and writing a book that will conclusively prove his guilt. As she delves deeper into her research, however,she uncovers horrifying and heretofore unknown facts that shed new light on her sister's murder. With each discovery, she comes closer to a confrontation with a desperate killer.

Gripping and relentlessly compelling Daddy's Little Girl, a portrayal of a family shattered by crime reflects Mary Higgins Clark's uncanny insight into the twisted mind of a killer and is further evidence of why she is America's favorite author of suspense.


  • Ellie Cavanaugh — the protagonist, Ellie was only seven when her sister was murdered and her family broke up. Now twenty three years later convicted Rob Westerfield is being released, Ellie, now an investigative reporter launches her own investigation of her sister's murder when new details turns up.
  • Rob Westerfield — wealthy son of Westerfield family, he was convicted of Andrea's murder due to Ellie's testimony even though there were lack of evidence of his involvement.
  • Andrea Cavanaugh — Ellie's vivacious older sister who was murdered when she was fifteen. The novel's main premise revolves around her murder.
  • Teddy Cavanaugh — Ellie's seventeen-year-old step-brother who is her spitting image.
  • Edward Cavanaugh — Ellie, Andrea and Teddy's father; Genine's ex-husband; who was a state trooper for thirty five years.
  • Genine Cavanaugh — Ellie & Andrea's mother; Edward's wife; Andrea's murder emotionally broke her down and she turned into an alcoholic eventually succumbing to liver failure few years before the beginning of the novel.
  • Pete Lawlor - Ellie's boss at the newspaper in Atlanta and eventually her husband.
  • Paul Stroebel — Paul was shy sixteen-year-old when Andrea was murdered. He was suspect in murder investigation until Ellie's testimony saved him.
  • Mrs Stroebel — Paul's mother who is like a mother figure to Ellie since her childhood days.
  • Dorothy Westfield — wealthy head of Westfield empire, she is undecided about Rob's guilt and is unsure about leaving her wealth to her only grandson Rob.
  • Detective Marcus Longo — He was original investigator in Andrea's murder case twenty two years ago. He returns to help Ellie in her investigation.
  • Amy Phyllis Rayburn — Amy was killed in similar fashion to Andrea few years before Andrea's murder in the neighboring town.
  • Dan Mayotte — Amy's boyfriend who was wrongfully convicted of Amy's murder.
  • Will Nebels — local handyman with sleaze personality; another suspect in Andrea's murder.


Daddy's Little Girl, the novel (front flip and back flip pages)