- Jyoti/Jasmine/Jane/Jase - The protagonist of the novel. She is called different names throughout her journey from India to Iowa, each name signifying pivotal moments in her life.
- Prakash Vijh - Jasmine's first husband whom she marries while in Hasnapur, India. He is a "modern man, a city man" who works two jobs as a repairman and a bookkeeper while studying for his diploma exams.
- Taylor - Jasmine's employer and love interest. He is the father of Duff, the young girl for whom Jasmine serves as a nanny when living in New York.
- Bud Ripplemayer - Jasmine's husband whom she meets through his mother in Iowa. He works for a bank and is paralyzed when he is shot.
- Du Thien- Jasmine and Bud's adopted Vietnamese son. He is fourteen when they adopt him but age seventeen during the novel.
- Darrell Lutz - Jasmine's neighbor while in Iowa. He seems to be infatuated by Jasmine. He is a farmer and struggles to get a loan from Bud's bank in the novel.
- Karin - Bud's ex-wife whom he leaves for Jasmine.
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