Alice Munro

Teachers and parents! Our Teacher Edition on Runaway makes teaching easy.


Carla is a young woman living with her husband Clark in their mobile home in Canada. She met Clark when she was 18, a few years before the beginning of the story, and decided to… read analysis of Carla


Clark is Carla’s husband. The story leaves his background relatively murky, but it is clear that he is not well educated and has moved around a lot, doing various odd jobs for work. He… read analysis of Clark

Sylvia Jamieson

Sylvia is Clark and Carla’s neighbor. Her husband Leon died recently, and Sylvia has just returned from a vacation to Greece with her friends. Leon was significantly older than Sylvia, but Sylvia is older… read analysis of Sylvia Jamieson

Leon Jamieson

Leon was Sylvia’s husband and a poet. He is already dead at the beginning of the story. Carla and Clark learn from his obituary that Leon had won a big cash prize for his… read analysis of Leon Jamieson
Minor Characters
Joy Tucker
Joy is a local woman who boards her horse, who she calls Lizzie Borden, with Clark and Carla. She and Clark had a quarrel at one point which worried Carla, but it resolves at the end of the story.
Ruth is Sylvia’s friend who lives in Toronto and was going to let Carla stay with her there.
Maggie and Soraya
Maggie and Soraya are Sylvia’s friends who accompany her to Greece. They call Sylvia’s attachment to Carla a “crush,” which irritates Sylvia.