Norman Daniels was the son of Roy Daniels, the husband of Rose McClendon, the son-in-law of Craig McClendon, and nearly the father of Caroline Daniels. He is a despicable and abusive man and the main antagonist of the novel Rose Madder.
Daniels married McClendon in 1980, a few weeks after Rose graduated from high school; his abuse of her began on their wedding night, when he yanked her hair and bit her for slamming a door. In 1985, he and Bissington investigated the robbery of a Payless store by Richie Bender; in the course of the investigation, they beat and raped Wendy Yarrow, for which they received official reprimands. Yarrow later hired a lawyer in order to sue Daniels, Bissington and the Aubreyville Police Department, but turned up murdered before the case could move forward. Later in 1985, Daniels beat his wife – then pregnant – so badly that she miscarried.
In 1994, Daniels returned home to find that his wife had left and taken his ATM card. Over the next weeks he searched for her, eventually tracking her to a midwestern city 800 miles from Aubreyville. There he learned her whereabouts from Peter Slowik, who he murdered in Slowik's own basement. He would later be killed by the woman in the Rose Madder painting after he tries to kill Rose.