Pecola is the lead character within the text but perhaps not the most complex one- Claudia, who narrates most of Pecola's story, wins over with her clearer growth and development. Pecola is the daughter of Cholly and Polly Breedlove and lives in Lorain, Ohio. The novel follows the year in which she starts puberty and follows her descent into madness. This is partly a reaction to her rape at the hands of her father and the subsequent loss of the baby. However, Morrison offers evidence that her position as scapegoat for her entire black community is what led to her crumbling self-esteem and the tragic quest for the bluest eyes of the title.
The real sadness in Pecola's case is that we witness a couple of brief moments where it is obvious that in a world that offered her more care she could have been a normal, happy child.