[su_note note_color=”#ff9d99″]*BEWARE* There are many spoilers for events that happen in all three books in the following information.



Tad McGreevy
Tad McGreevy – tall, slim, reddish-brown hair, soft-hearted, loyal friend. Son of Jim and Jeannie McGreevy, a housewife and an attorney. Younger brother of Sharon McGreevy. Possesses the ability to see “auras” around others that tell him whether the person is good, bad, kind, etc. The power is called Tetrachromatic Super Vision and also can cause blinding headaches. The “color of evil,” in Tad’s world, is khaki. Other colors signify other personality characteristics, such as red indicating a violent temperament. [Yes, there really is a similar ailment in real life.]

Stevie Scranton

Stevie Scranton – blonde, geeky, funny, class clown. Best friend of Tad McGreevy. A bit of a social outcast, but sensitive and kind. Son of Sally and Earl Scranton, a housewife and a blue collar worker at the Rath Packing Plant. Older sister, Shannon, is one year younger than Sharon McGreevy, Tad’s sister. Stevie had some problems at birth (born without a fontanel) and his older sister, Shannon, has staked out the family territory as “the smart one” leaving Stevie with the designation “troublemaker.” Shannon has graduated and works for Layne Insurance Agency. Stevie is close to his mother Sally. His father Earl regards him as a bit of a wimp and is not close to him. Both Sharon and Belinda Chandler are entering their junior year of college when the first book opens, while Stevie is entering his junior year of high school and turns 18 in December.

Jenny San Giovanni

Jenny SanGiovanni – cute, blonde cheerleader. Daughter of Andrea SanGiovanni (Tuttle) and Jeff SanGiovanni. Jeff had the Budweiser distributorship in the Cedar Falls area, but Jeff and Andrea divorced and Jeff married Tammy Tolliver, the ex-wife of local policeman Tom Tolliver. Jeff and Tammy have moved to Boulder as the first book opens. Jeff was an NRA gun nut. He had a vast collection of guns under lock and key in his attic. The couple also has two other children: Cynthia (Jenny’s older sister) and Frank (Jenny’s older brother).

Janice Kramer

Janice Kramer – dark-haired, busty Italian cheerleader who once dated Jeremy Gustaffsson but eventually ends up with Stevie Scranton (in Book 3). Her father is a baker and her mother is a housewife. They are staunch Catholics. She also has an older sister, Claire Kramer Richardson, who is married to Stephen and works at Security State Bank. Claire and her husband have been unsuccessfully trying to start a family.


Melody Harris (the smallest of the cheerleaders at 4’8”, 90+ lbs, and top of the human pyramid). Melody’s fate is left hanging at the end of Book #2, RED IS FOR RAGE, following a bad fall from atop a human pyramid cheerleading formation.

Angie Yancy (dates clarinet player Chris Turgasen; President of Madchens Girls Auxiliary Club (MAGIC). Cheerleader. Wants to be a hairdresser after graduation.

Heather Crompton (blonde airhead; cause of a knife fight between 2 Hispanic cousins). Daughter of Nora and Chris. From well-to-do family. With Jeremy Gustaffsson when he is killed by Pogo.

Kelly Carter (aka, Kelly Jamison) Step-daughter of Joe Jamison. Daughter of Megan Kelly Jamison. Cheerleader. Kidnapped (along with Heather Crompton) in Book #3, KHAKI = KILLER. Brother Jason died of Leukemia.

Belinda Chandler – Born in 1984. Only child of Charlie and Cassie Chandler. Involved with teacher Kenny (“Cereal Man”) Kellogg. Kidnapped and held hostage (along with Andrea SanGiovanni) by Pogo in Book One, The Color of Evil. Lives near her widowed father in the Regency Suites Apartments, after the murder of Cassie, her mother and Charlie’s wife.

Shannon Scranton – older sister of Stevie who is entering her junior year of college as Book #1 opens. Attending UNI on a volleyball scholarship that Coach Kellogg helped her secure.

Sharon McGreevy – older sister of Tad McGreevy. She is one year older than Shannon Scranton. Works at Layne’s Insurance Agency.

Cynthia SanGiovanni – older sister of Jenny SanGiovanni. Andrea lived with Cynthia, who works for Layne Insurance Agency, for a brief time after her house was bull-dozed in Book #1.

Claire Kramer Richardson – older, married, childless sister of Janice Kramer to whom Gina and John Kramer want the pregnant unmarried Janice to give up her child. She works at the Security State Bank with her husband, Stephen.

Male High School Characters

Jeremy Gustaffsson – blonde, blue-eyed, Nordic-looking, a natural athlete, nearly 19 years old. BMOC and star of football, basketball and track at Sky High High School. Obsessed with Jenny SanGiovanni (in an O.J. Simpson way). Father, Leroy, follows the harness races from track to track. Mother physically abused by LeRoy. LeRoy did time in prison for rape. Brothers Jimmy and Jeff are 5 and 6 years younger than Jeremy. Jimmy is an 8th grader and Jeff a 7th grader when Jeremy murders Cassie Chandler. (Jimmy and Jeff, too, are not academic stars and have suffered from moving around the country following the ponies.) Has a terrible temper (hence the title) and an O/C streak. Central character in Book #1. Killed in Book #2 by Pogo on Lovers’ Lane in a case of mistaken identity, while he is parked there with Heather Crompton.

Alex Jimenez – the aggressor in the knife fight at Sky High, Mexican, owner of a “low-rider” car. Alex is the cousin stabbed by Pogo in Book One and Roberto is the cousin who gives chase to Pogo’s car in the first book, THE COLOR OF EVIL.

Roberto Jimenez – Alex’s cousin. They rescue Belinda Chandler and Andrea SanGiovanni from Pogo in the Heights, the poorer part of town where Andrea SanGiovanni has heavily invested in real estate.

Sean Carpenter – boyfriend (and, at the end of Book #2, husband) of Melody Harris. Son of Linda and Paul Carpenter. Older brothers include Brian, Blake and Kenneth. Marries Melody Harris at the end of Book #2, RED IS FOR RAGE. Father of Adam Sean Carpenter, his son with Melody. Melody dies in Book #3, KHAKI = KILLER, following a fall from atop the human pyramid at the UNI Dome rescheduled Homecoming game. Prominent in Book #3.

Rodney Black – father, Bob, shoots film of the Sky High Eagles’ games and is sports photographer for Channel 5, the local NBC affiliate. Rodney has a crude home-made tattoo covering his entire back of a brain being pushed through the ringer of a washing machine. He has a long history of teasing Stevie Scranton.

Zack Porfino – father owns the local garage where Jeremy works after graduation. One of Jeremy Gustaffsson’s followers, although he is a year behind Jeremy in school. Comic relief in all 3 books.

Stewie Truitt – one of Jeremy’s younger followers. Stewie stutters. Comic relief in all 3 books.

Terry Wilkinson – a large boy in Stevie’s history class/ homeroom.

Paul Nicholson – Commander of the Cedar Falls Police Force in Book #1, but replaced by Captain Larry Mullen by Book #3.

Hank Henderson – fellow football player for the Sky High Eagles who is 6’ 3” and part of the wedding party at the marriage of Melody Harris and Sean Carpenter.

Rich Cromwell – plays bass drum in the band. Is present at the Homecoming shooting by Earl Scranton.

Chris Turgasen – longtime steady boyfriend of Angie Yancy and clarinet player in the school band.

Scott Fluegel – 19-year-old boy who was kidnapped by Daniel Malone at age 8 and held captive for 11 years in Chicago.

Police Officers

Charlie (Charles) Chandler, husband of Cassie, father of Belinda. Tad’s ally in his search for Stevie. Retires at the end of Book #1. Helps organize volunteers to find both Stevie and the missing girls, Heather and Kelly, in Book #3.

Jake Gordon – first responder to the SanGiovanni shooting. KIA.

Larry Mason – first responder to the SanGiovanni shooting. KIA.

Evelyn Hoeflinger– Charlie’s much-younger female partner on the force.

Rita Cernetisch – female partner of Tom Tolliver. Olympic caliber sharpshooter.

Lenny McIntyre – Geeky Officer Friendly at Sky High. Helps save Tad’s life in Book #3.

Jim Kinkade – officer from the Fort Madison Penitentiary in charge of transporting Michael Clay to the new prison near Cedar Falls. Killed by Pogo during Michael Clay’s initial escape.

Deputy Joseph Hafner – highway patrolman who pulls Pogo over on his way to kill Tad at a football game at the UNI dome and is brutally murdered and buried in a field near old Highway 218.

Nels Peterson – 50-ish officer who gathers information from the McGreevys and from the parents of the kidnapped Heather Crompton and Kelly Carter/Jamison.

Larry Mullen- Captain of the Cedar Falls Police Department during the search for the missing girls in Book #3, KHAKI = KILLER.

Paul Nicholson – Former Commander of the Cedar Falls Police Force in Book #1 (THE COLOR OF EVIL). Related to the schoolteacher (English/History), Miss Nicholson.

Joe Clark – fellow detective on the Cedar Falls Police force, with a desk near Rita Cernetisch


Shawn VanSlyke – Chief of the team sent to rescue Heather and Kelly.

Walter “Wally” Ohlsen – field commander of the four-man team

Ron Oscow – team member who helps rescue Kelly Carter and Heather Crompton from Declan Hunter.


Earl Scranton, Mike Murphy, Lloyd Carpenter (brother of Paul Carpenter who owns Carpenters’ Corners Paint And Paper). All members of the class of ’63 along with Charlie Chandler.

Ike Isham – now in a nursing home, he owns a cabin in Burnham Woods that many students use as a hangout.

Able Yundt – owned the local movie theater, which was converted from an Opera House. He is 80.

George Bates – orderly in the ICU when Tad is brought in.

Earl Scranton – age 58. Stevie’s father, a blue-collar worker at the Rath Packing Plant. Married to Sally Scranton. Father to Shannon and Stevie. Goes on shooting rampage in Book #2, seeking revenge for mistreatment of son Stevie. Will be shot and killed by Rita Cernetisch at the Homecoming game in Book 2, RED IS FOR RAGE..

Sally Scranton – Stevie’s somewhat eccentric mother, wife of Earl and mother of Shannon, Stevie’s older sister.

Wanda, Harold and Sandy James – Wanda worked as housekeeper and babysitter for the SanGiovannis. She and Harold, her husband, adopted Sandy, who was tragically killed in a murder/suicide accidental shooting while Sandy, then aged 12, was playing with guns not under lock and key. After accidentally shooting his best friend, Johnny Mortoriano, Sandy turned the gun on himself.

Don and Samuel Denkinger: Samuel Denkinger is the town coroner. Don Denkinger was a major league umpire from Cedar Falls, Iowa. Samuel performs an autopsy on Dr. Abraham Eisenstadt in Book #2.

Harold and Ruth Harris – parents of Melody Harris, their only child. Of Swedish descent. Prominent in Book #3 and at the end of Book #2, when their daughter Melody and Sean Carpenter marry.

Paul and Linda Carpenter – parents of Sean Carpenter (and his older brothers Brian, Blake, and Kenny.) Prominent in Book #3.

Dr. Klein – head of OB/GYN department at Cedar Falls Memorial Hospital.

Dr. Karachi – neurosurgeon specialist who travels from Iowa City to Cedar Falls to examine Melody.

Dr. Abraham Eisenstadt – local psychiatrist who treats Tad. Neighbor to Andrea SanGiovanni in Book #2. Abe appears only in Books 1 and 2, as he dies of a heart attack in Book #2 and there is a serio-comic attempt to move him from Andrea SanGiovanni’s house back to his own garage next door, so the townsfolk won’t gossip. Charlie Chandler is called (by Andrea) to help move the body.

Sarah Eisenstadt – Abe’s wife, who goes insane and murders their two children, Rachel and Zoe, at the beginning of Book #2.

Nora Crompton – mother of Heather, wife of Christopher, local developer. Sister to Declan Hunter. More important in Book #3, when Heather is kidnapped and held prisoner.

Christopher Crompton – Husband of Nora, father of Heather. Owns a construction company with his father-in-law, Bob Hunter. Also dabbles in grain futures.

Declan Hunter – local Scoutmaster shot (but only wounded) at the football field by Earl Scranton on Homecoming night. Vietnam veteran suffering from PTSD. Dies in Book #3 (KHAKI = KILLER).

Claire Kramer Richardson – Janice’s older childless married sister. She and her husband Stephen work at the Security State Bank.

Stephen Richardson – Claire’s husband. He also works at Security State bank.

Gina and John Kramer – Janice’s Catholic parents, a baker and a housewife.

Jeannie and Jim McGreevy – Tad’s mother and father. Jim is an attorney; Jeannie is a housewife and local socialite.

Clint McClintock – former owner of the SanGiovannis’ house in Harvest Home, who had used the lavish home as a meth lab and built a secret underground tunnel to a nearby field. Clint is never seen in either book, but is simply known to have used the house to manufacture meth.

Pogo, aka Michael Clay, aka Mike Parker when hiding out in Jesup, Iowa working at a diner. Serial killer. Part-time clown. Escaped convict.

Daniel Malone – Kidnapper of Stevie Scranton and Scott Fluegel. Pedophile. Pizza parlor owner in Chicago, Illinois, but originally from Webster Groves, Missouri. Important in Book #2. Shot and killed by Earl Scranton at Homecoming in RED IS FOR RAGE.

Bobby Hurley – former classmate of Paul Nicholson (nephew of Miss Nicholson, the teacher and Captain of Cedar Falls Police Department in Book #1) and owner of a heavy equipment franchise that lends the bulldozers and heavy equipment to the police department to knock down the SanGiovannis’ house in Book #1, in order to flush out Pogo (Michael Clay). Married to petite blonde Nicollette.

George Kalafut – Owner/operator of the Kalafut diner in Jesup, Iowa, where Pogo works under the alias Mike Parker.

Howard Thompson – Daniel Malone’s right-hand man in his pizza business in Chicago.

Harold Drake – neighbor of Andrea SanGiovanni on Cherry Wood Lane who walks his dog Lily each day. Harold also claims to have won the Silver Star.

Aunt Ellen – Stevie Scranton’s aunt, who his mother Sally moves in with when she leaves Earl.

Sammy Swanson – regular customer at George Kalafut’s diner in Jesup, Iowa.

Gary and Sherry Green: Gary runs Green’s Funeral Home in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Sherry works at the Cedar Falls Post Office.

Dawn – secretary to Police Chief Larry Mullen

TEACHERS OF SKY HIGH SCHOOL (Lab School of the State College of Iowa)

Mrs. Anderson – History/English teacher. Sends Stevie Scranton to the Principal’s office for fighting with Rodney Black, after which Stevie disappears.

Miss Nicholson- History/English teacher at Sky High High School and aunt of Paul Nicholson (one-time Police Chief, in Book #1).

Principal Peter Puck – pedophile principal. Possibly homosexual. Short, fat and balding. Good friend and former roommate in Chicago, David Simpson, is openly gay. He aids Charlie and Evelyn in locating Stevie Scranton when Stevie is held prisoner by Daniel Malone. Shot and killed at Homecoming by Earl Scranton.

Mr. Ross – teacher who dressed up as Abraham Lincoln and was summarily fired when Dr. Peter Puck also dressed up as Abraham Lincoln for Lincoln’s Birthday festivities.

Kenny Kellogg, aka, “Cereal Man” – chemistry teacher with a fondness for having sex with his underage female students. Ultimately impregnates Belinda Chandler (daughter of Charlie) and proposes marriage to her.

Nurse Hernandez – the school nurse who treats Stevie just before his disappearance in Book #1.

Coach Theodore (Teddy) Bare – sadistic, lazy gym coach. Prominent in Book one.

Janet Sloan – Women’s Phys Ed teacher and cheerleader sponsor who does all the real work in the Physical Education department at Sky High. A graduate of Southern Illinois.

Mr. Randall – School counselor who counsels Jenny SanGiovanni and Stevie Scranton.