The main character, also known as the protagonist, in the novel Dear Mr. Henshaw is Leigh Marcus Botts. He is a troubled, conflicted boy who struggles with his own internal conflict, which impacts his struggles in his daily life. Leigh writes letters to a children's author, Boyd Henshaw, for advice on how to tackle these struggles. Leigh's parents are Bill and Bonnie Botts, and they are divorced, which is one of the conflicts that Leigh is struggling with. Leigh's father, Bill, is employed as a truck driver, and Bonnie, Leigh's mother, who works as a caterer, is also studying to be a nurse. Leigh also has a pet dog, Bandit. Mr. Fridley is the school custodian, whom he happens to like better than his sixth-grade teacher, Miss Martinez. Other characters mentioned are the school librarian, Miss Neely, and Leigh's friend whom he meets at school, Barry. Another famous author who is mentioned in the letters is Angela Badger. Lastly, Leigh never meets Boyd Henshaw, the children's author who has made an impact on his life, but Mr. Henshaw is a prominent character.