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The protagonist of the novel. A boy who grows from toddlerhood to age 15 over the course of the novel, he is curious, brave, and intelligent. He has an unusual upbringing, adopted by ghost foster parents and raised by the dead and undead inhabitants of a graveyard.
The assassin of the Jacks of All Trades. He prefers to make his kills with a knife. He is cold-hearted, arrogant, deceptive, and murderous. He kills Bod’s birth family and spends years searching for Bod to kill him, too.
A vampire and Bod’s guardian. He is reserved in speaking, protective, compassionate, and understanding. While the narrative hints at his griefs, they are never openly stated.
The ghost who becomes Bod’s adoptive mother in the graveyard. Childless in life, she is warm-hearted and caring, behaving toward Bod just as a natural mother would. Her point of view is based on her life a few centuries before the story opens.
A ghost, Bod’s adoptive father, and married in life to Mrs. Owens.
A girl who becomes Bod’s only living human friend. She is a happy child who becomes an angry teenager.
An international organization that appears benevolent on the surface but actually has evil schemes. The Jacks want to kill Bod because of a prophecy that he will be the end of their order.
An immortal guardian monster. It is both singular and plural, having three heads and referring to itself as “We.” It guards the oldest tomb in the graveyard, so old no one knows the name of the person buried there.
A werewolf (or Hound of Hell) and one of Bod’s teachers and protectors.
The greedy owner of the shop where Bod tries to sell the ancient brooch.
A dead witch buried in unconsecrated ground. She is Bod’s ally and gets him out of trouble at different times.
A baronet among the dead in Bod’s graveyard. Pompous and self-important, but well-meaning and kindly.
A boy at Bod’s school who bullies younger children. He is big and strong for his age, with little imagination.
A bully at Bod’s school, Nick’s friend. She has light blonde hair and blue eyes and is good at thinking up ways to intimidate younger children.
A boy at Bod’s school and a victim of bullying. Bod helps him to deal with the problem.
The three ghouls who try to take Bod to Ghulheim.
A member of the Jacks of All Trades. He leads the group that comes to kill Bod at the climax of the story.
A member of the Jacks of All Trades. He is one of the group that comes to kill Bod at the climax of the story.