Of all the folks in the mountain shacks, the Casteels were the lowest -- the scum of the hills.
Heaven Leigh Casteel was the prettiest, smartest girl in the backwoods, despite her ragged clothes and dirty face...despite a father meaner than ten vipers...despite her weary stepmother, who worked her like a mule. For her brother Tom and the little ones, Heaven clung to her pride and her hopes. Someday they'd get away and show the world that they were decent, fine and talented -- worthy of love and respect.
Then Heaven's stepmother ran off, and her wicked, greedy father had a scheme -- a vicious scheme that threatened to destroy the precious dream of Heaven and the children forever!
Heaven Leigh Casteel (Heavenly) - the heroine of the story. Eldest daughter of Luke Casteel and Leigh Van Voreen Casteel.
Annie Brandywine (Granny) - wife of Toby Casteel, Grandmother to Heaven and her siblings.
Thomas Luke Casteel II - “Tom” Brother to Heaven.
(Thomas) Luke Casteel (Pa) - Father to Heaven and her siblings. Former husband of Leigh Van Voreen Casteel. Husband to Sarah. - who is mother to Tom, Fanny Keith and Our Jane.
Toby Casteel (Grandpa) - Father to Luke Casteel
Leigh Van Voreen Casteel (Angel) -- Heaven's mother. Died in childbirth while having Heaven.
Sarah Casteel - the second wife of Luke Casteel, 14 years old at the time of her marriage to him.
Fanny Louisa Casteel - Promiscuous sister of Heaven.
Keith Casteel - Youngest son of Luke Casteel and Sarah
Jane Casteel (Our Jane) -- The youngest child of Sarah and Luke Casteel. Got the nickname of “Our Jane” after Fanny got angry once at heaven for basically taking Jane as her own. “She's OUR Jane-not yers!”
Logan Stonewall - Heavens first love. A city boy. His father owns the Pharmacy where Mrs. Deale takes Heaven and her sibings to have ice cream on Sundays.
Grant stonewall -Logan's father, Owner of the Stonewall Pharmacy.
Skeeter Burl - the mean farmer that Tom frequently stole chickens from when they had no food.
Marianne Deale-Heaven and Toms school teacher in Winnerrow. Heaven admired her greatly. She is from Baltimore.
Kitty Setterton Dennison - Wife of Cal, “adopted mother” of Heaven. A mean woman who treats Heaven like crap. Lives in Candlewick with husband Cal Dennison. Has family in Winnerrow. Was once in love with Luke Casteel.
Cal Dennison - Husband to Kitty who is 10 years her junior. “Adoptive father” to Heaven. Later to become Heavens first lover.
Maisie Setterton - Kitty `s plain sister, lives in Winnerrow.
Reva Setterton - Kitty's mother. Lives in Winnerrow. A hard woman.
Reverend Wise - the good reverend of the church that Heaven and her family went to in Winnerrow.
Rosalynn Wise - Wife of Reverend Wise.
Mrs. Sally Trench - the owner of the nursing home where Toby Casteel now resides.
Buck Henry - The farmer who bought Tom from Luke. Treated Tom like a slave.