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Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate
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Home of the Brave

by Katherine Applegate

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Such a touching story of Sudanese refugee Kek as he travels to snowbound Minnesota to live. As he adjusts to his new life, he longs for his old one, which was filled with a beautiful family in a horrendous situation. It's a great story, simply told, that's effective, funny and powerful. ( )
  Oregonpoet | Jul 12, 2019 |
Kek comes from Africa where he lived with his mother, father, and brother. But only he and his mother have survived. Now she's missing, and Kek has been sent to a new home. In America, he sees snow for the first time, and feels its sting. He wonders if the people in this new place will be like the winter―cold and unkind. But slowly he makes friends: a girl in foster care, an old woman with a rundown farm, and a sweet, sad cow that reminds Kek of home. As he waits for word of his mother's fate, Kek weathers the tough Minnesota winter by finding warmth in his new friendships, strength in his memories, and belief in his new country.
  dneirick | May 9, 2019 |
This is the story of Kek, as he travels to America for the first time. Kek has lost his brother and father, and he awaits news of his missing mother. Kek journeys through this strange and seemingly unkind new land experiencing a slew of new things, snow, barren trees, and more. He befriends a cow, who serves as a link to the home he left, as well as a girl in foster care.

I felt the emphasis of loss and the awkwardness of being different in a strange place while reading Home of the Brave. This novel is a window into the lives of refugees, a memorable and emotional journey.
  maryganderson | Sep 17, 2018 |
Kek is a Sudanese refugee who arrives in Minnesota to live with his cousin and aunt who are also refugees. This is a strange land with strange customs and Kek misses the familiarity of his own land, especially his brother and father who were killed in a military raid. He escapes to a refugee camp with his mother in a neighboring country, but he and his mother become separated. Now he hopes everyday that they will find his mother and bring her to America.

Soon after arriving, he begins school with his cousin. He is put into an ESL class to learn English with other immigrants from many other countries. Kek, continues to be baffled by all the modern conveniences. He's only trying to be helpful when he puts the dishes in the washing machine and breaks them all. To earn money to buy new dishes, he remembers the cow he saw grazing in a field when he first came to Minnesota. He returns to the farm and asks the owner for a job. She is impressed with Kek and hires him to take care of the farm. Other than his relatives, the cow is his closest tie to life he left behind as a cattle herder in Sudan.

This book is a fictional account of what it may have been like to be a "Lost Boy" refugee arriving in America after suffering the tragedy of war in Sudan. Applegate captures the innocence and frustration of these boys as they struggle to make a new life. Telling the story in verse is brilliant. ( )
  valorrmac | May 15, 2018 |
A lovely coming-of-age novel written in free verse, which is very fitting given that Kek/Cowboy is from the Sudan where music and verse are important. On his first day in his new city he sees a cow and stops to pet it. This cow and the small farm he lives on will become important ties to the old country for Kek. Recommended. ( )
  whymaggiemay | Feb 13, 2018 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0312535635, Paperback)

A man I helped to settle here
taught me a saying from Africa.
I’ll bet you would like it:
A cow is God with a wet nose.

Kek comes from Africa where he lived with his mother, father, and brother. But only he and his mother have survived. Now she’s missing, and Kek has been sent to a new home. In America, he sees snow for the first time, and feels its sting. He wonders if the people in this new place will be like the winter—cold and unkind. But slowly he makes friends: a girl in foster care, an old woman with a rundown farm, and a sweet, sad cow that reminds Kek of home. As he waits for word of his mother’s fate, Kek weathers the tough Minnesota winter by finding warmth in his new friendships, strength in his memories, and belief in his new country.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:01:15 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

Kek, an African refugee, is confronted by many strange things at the Minneapolis home of his aunt and cousin, as well as in his fifth grade classroom, and longs for his missing mother, but finds comfort in the company of a cow and her owner.

» see all 2 descriptions

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