The House on Mango Street Important Characters

Esperanza - young Mexican-American narrator, sister of Nenny, Carlos, and Kiki, who lives with her family on Mango Street and records her feelings during her first year there. She realizes that not only does she want to live somewhere better someday, but she wants to help others escape as well.

Rachel and Lucy - Esperanza's friends who live across the street. They buy a bike together, jump rope, and walk through the neighborhood in high heels.

Sally - classmate of Esperanza who is very beautiful, so her father hits her when he catches her talking to a boy. Eventually she marries an older man who moves her away.

Nenny - Esperanza's spacey younger sister who she spends a lot of time with but who sometimes embarrasses her

Marin - A young neighbor who lives with her cousin's family and baby-sits the children and so cannot leave the house. She meets Geraldo at a dance, but he dies that same night.

Papa - Esperanza's father who works most of the time and isn't mentioned much

Mama - Esperanza's mother who is smart but dropped out of school because she was poor and is disappointed with the way her life turned out

Alicia - Esperanza's college friend who is trying to escape through education

Cathy - a potentially racist neighbor who decides to move away

Carlos and Kiki - Esperanza's younger brothers who are mentioned more than seen

Meme Ortiz - moves into Cathy's house with his dog

Louie - lives in the basement of Cathy's house with his cousin and Marin. Louie's cousin gives the kids a ride in a stolen car before they arrest him.

The Vargas Kids - misbehaved children who bother the neighbors and whose father abandoned them

Uncle Nacho - Esperanza's uncle who dances with her at a baptism

Aunt Lupe - Esperanza's aunt who has become blind, and bedridden. She listens to Esperanza's poems and encourages her to keep writing, but Esperanza and her friends mock Lupe behind her back.

Elenita - A strange woman Esperanza visits to have her fortune told. Elenita reads Tarot cards and tells Esperanza that she will have "a home in the heart."

Ruthie - a neighbor who lives with her mother Edna despite being married

Geraldo - a man Marin meets at a dance who dies the same night

Mamacita - heavy neighbor whose son brings her to America but she doesn't speak English and never leaves her apartment

Rafaela - A neighborhood woman whose husband locks her in their apartment, so she sends money down to Esperanza and her friends so they can buy her sweet juices

Minerva - a married woman in the neighborhood who shares her poems with Esperanza. Slightly older than Esperanza, she already has an abusive husband and two children.

Tito - boy who steals Sally's keys in order to get her to kiss him and his friends

Sire - Even though he sometimes looks at Esperanza lovingly, he and his girlfriend Lois hang around outside late at night.

Earl - A neighbor who works nights and sometimes brings women home with him. Neighbors think each woman is his wife, but the women are probably prostitutes.

The Three Sisters - women Esperanza meets at Lucy and Rachel's baby sister's funeral who tell her to make a wish and promise it will come true. They advise Esperanza to return to Mango Street after she leaves it.




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