Amir The narrator and protagonist; a Pashtun and Sunni Muslim.
Baba Amir's father, who is considered a hero and leader in Kabul.
Hassan Amir's playmate and servant; a Hazara and Shi'a Muslim; son to Ali.
Sohrab Hassan's son. Like his father, Sohrab is excellent with a slingshot. Sohrab is the bait that Rahim Khan uses to lure Amir back to the Middle East.
Rahim Khan Baba's best friend and business partner; father-figure to Amir.
Assef A Kabul bully who ends up joining the Taliban.
Soraya Amir's wife.
Ali Hassan's father; servant to Baba. Having suffered from polio as a child, Ali has a crippled leg and is teased by kids in Kabul.
General Sahib (Iqbal Taheri) A friend of Baba's in America; father to Soraya. The general is biding his time in America, waiting to be called back into service in Afghanistan.
Khala Taheri (Khala Jamila) The wife of General Taheri and mother to Soraya. Khala Taheri is the first to encourage Amir's romantic overtures toward Soraya.
Farid The taxi driver who takes Amir back to Afghanistan. Farid initially judges Amir as a traitor who abandoned Afghanistan, but after he learns of the real reason for Amir's return, Farid helps him.
Raymond Andrews The official at the U.S. Embassy in Pakistan who makes Amir realize the difficulties he will encounter if he attempts to adopt Sohrab.
Zaman The director of the orphanage in Kabul.
Kamal A childhood follower of Assef. Kamal dies when attempting to escape Afghanistan in a fuel truck.
Wali A childhood follower of Assef.
Farzana Hassan's wife and Sohrab's mother.
Sanaubar Hassan's mother. Although she abandons him soon after giving birth, she returns years later and takes care of her grandson.
Kaka Sharif Soraya's uncle, who has connections in the INS and helps Amir get Sohrab a visa into the United States.
Dr. Armand Faruqi The surgeon with the Clark Gable mustache who tends to Amir's injuries after being beaten by Assef.