Spoiler – Don’t Read this if you like to find out things on your own.
Kim Stanley Robinson states, near the end of the book, that the reincarnations of the various characters begin with the same first letter.
This is a partial list of the characters in the book. When I re-read the book, I will fill it in better.
One book club member mentioned that all S characters were leaders or persons in power.
Awake to the Emptyness M – Bold, Psin, Kyu, ZhenHe
F – I-Li
F – Bithari, Katima,
A – Kya
Ocean Continent M – Kheim, I-Chin
F - Butterfly
Alchemist M – Bahram, Khalid, Iwang
Warp and Weft M – Busho (aka, FromWest), Keeper of the Wampum
F - Iagogeh
Widow Kang M – Bao Ssu, Pao, Ibrahim
F – Kang
F – Bhakata, Butterfly, Peng-Ti
M - Piali
F – Pan Xichun, Kali