Miss Naomi Fisher
Miss Naomi Fisher, Karen Michaelis’ friend. She helps Karen when the latter becomes pregnant and has a child by Max Ebhart, Naomi’s fiancé. Her home is the setting for the story.
Leopold Moody, a nine-year-old boy. He has come to Naomi’s house to see the mother he has never met, Karen Michaelis. When he learns she will not come, he tries to be indifferent, but his stoic attitude dissolves into tears. Only Mme Fisher can console him. He seems pleased when his mother’s husband, Ray Forrestier, encourages him to go to his mother.
Henrietta Mountjoy, a sympathetic eleven-year-old girl, who tries to console Leopold that day at Naomi’s house.
Mme Fisher, Naomi’s invalid mother. She helps young Leopold accept, even if he cannot understand, the world in which he finds himself.
Karen Michaelis, Leopold’s mother. After her child’s birth, she gives up the child and her fiancé, who is not the boy’s father. She finally marries her fiancé, Ray Forrestier, and allows him to overrule her resolve not to have her son in their home.
Max Ebhart, once Naomi’s fiancé, he is the father of Leopold, the result of a one-night love affair with Karen. Brilliant and sensitive, he is driven by his predicament into suicide. He kills himself by slashing his wrists.
Ray Forrestier, Karen’s fiancé at the time of her brief affair with Max. He eventually marries Karen, and it is he who insists that Leopold join the family, despite Karen’s doubts.