Way back when I was four years old - actually, it was on my fourth birthday - I got a series of two books (very small paperbacks for children) about a girl named Camilla, like me. The girl ends up being an amateur sleuth because of mysterious things happening in the area where she lives. Camilla in the book was ten years older than me and many times that was how it was. I read books for kids much older than me.

Once in a while, I come across a character named Silas, like my son. All of them are crotchety old men. Clearly, Silas hasn’t become one on the ’hot’ new baby names in English-speaking countries.

Lately, I’ve also come across a character named Petronella, in one book I will review quite soon. The lady was about middle aged (maybe a little younger) and extremely dull, a bit of a wet blanket. You can hardly imagine anyone more different from my daughter. Yet, it is her name. It’s both weird and fun to come across familiar names like that.

Even more recently, there was a character in another book, called Althea. That was even more weird. The lady was going senile. Again, as far from my niece as you can possibly imagine.

Finally, only the other day, I read a really great fantasy book, in fact one that I just reviewed and posted about today and in that an aunt by the name of Juliana was mentioned. You didn’t actually get to meet aunt Juliana, but still, her name was mentioned. A name that is also my other niece’s.

I can’t recall the last time I read about a Gabriella (my sister’s name) but it happens now and then. Clearly, that name isn’t as unusual as the others. There is a translator by that name, who translates many of my children’s favorite animated movies and tv series though. Also, an actress in Poldark shares my sister’s name so you see it quite frequently.

Though no more Camillas for a long time. Although Maria Lang/Dagmar Lange has a character by that name in one of her books - an opera singer no less and I seem to recall that Agatha Christie’s Towards Zero has an old lady by that name too. That’s as many as I can remember at the moment.