Ustath Rashid—neighbor, father of Kareem, assassinated as a rebel.
Kareem—neighbor and friend of Suleiman.
Auntie Salma—Rashid’s wife and mother of Kareem.
Bu Nasser—Nasser’s father.
Nasser—young rebel and friend of Suleiman’s father.
Siham—younger sister of Nasser, who flirts with Suleiman and later marries Kareem.
Auntie Nora—Suleiman’s mother’s sister.
Khaled—Suleiman’s mother’s brother, poet who marries Cathy, a white woman from the United States; he also betrays Suleiman’s mother and tells her parents she is flirting.
Cathy—American woman who marries Khaled.
Jihan—fourteen-year-old boy whose hand Suleiman’s mother holds in public.
Moosa—Egyptian friend of family and rebel.
Judge Yaseen—Mossa’s father, who raises Suleiman in Egypt.
Faraj Bu Suleiman el-Dewani—Suleiman’s father.
Najwa—Suleiman’s mother’s personal name.
Um Suleiman—Suleiman’s mother’s public name.
El-haj Muftah—Suleiman’s maternal grandfather.
Suleiman—nine-year-old boy who is the novel’s main character and narrator.
Habibi—Suleiman’s family nicknames.
Slooma—Majdi baker who sells illegal alcohol.
Adnan—neighborhood friend of Suleiman, young boy who suffers from uncontrollable bleeding.
Masoud—a neighborhood boy.
Ali—a neighborhood boy.