Sofia is the main character of the novel, the first daughter of Lydia and the older sister of Maria. After the landmine incident her sister had died leaving her with Lydia and no legs to walk on, after hospitalization she was given prosthetic legs to use. She is strong, but not physically and working hard for what she wants.
Maria is the younger sister of Sofia she is the one who asked Sofia for the white dress (thus introducing Sofia into sewing which continues to become an important part of her life later on) as well as this she died in an incident with a land mine that Sophia had stepped on. She is kind but curious.
Totio aided in Sofia making the white dress for Maria. He taught her how to sew by hand and later by machine. When him and his wife left the village he left his hut and sewing machine to Sofia who then ran a seamstress stall. He was very trusting to Sofia to allow her to take over the hut and have his sewing machine.
The mother of both Sofia and Maria and wife of the now deceased Hapakatanda. After the landmine incident, she grieved for Maria and left her daughter at the hospital, re-married (and then divorced after he was sent to prison), had a new child and came back for Sofia. She is caring but weak minded.
A key event that happened, happened at the start of the book, when her old village was raided, burnt down and her father killed by bandits. Another key point in her life was Old Muazena who told her of the secrets in the fire and the cycle of life with plants. A major point in the novel was the landmine incident, where Sofia lost not only her dear sister Maria, but her legs as well. An important point in the novel was at then end where Sofia takes over the hut and sewing machine so she can start her own seamstress stall in her village. At that moment her childhood finally settled down preparing for what is to come, and she could finally rest from the pain she had beared.
Sofia's Phsycological Journey
From the events in the book, you have to hand it to Sofia, her mental stability is strong throughout the whole book, and only wavers a bit after the landmine incident when she thinks Marias death was her doing. That if she had never proposed or played the game in the first place, Maria would still be alive. After living from a bandit raid on a village, loosing her father, stepping on a landmine loosing both her sister and her legs, learning her mother found a new husband and is pregnant, I'm surprised she still hasn't gone insane with the hectic happenings around her. To stay level headed and somewhat optimistic through all that has happened to her, to not wear down the continuous smile she has on her face, is something not of physical strength but spiritual strength to the masses. She has my utmost respect.
Mozambique, The place where it all happened