Kek emigrates to America to escape the brutal conditions and refuge camp life of his homeland. Kek arrives in the United States in winter, and to him this is a shocking surprise, for he is not used to either the cold, or the fact that all the trees have lost their leaves. In the cold of a Minnesota winter, Kek must get used to his new life in America.
Kek begins to make friends slowly but surely. First he meets Hannah, a girl who lives in foster care. Kek can connect with her, because his own father was killed, and no one has managed to find his mother yet. Kek is sure that she is still alive, though, and that someday she will come to America to be with him.
Then Kek meets an old woman named Lou. She lives on a rundown farm, and she has a cow. In Kek’s home country cows were very important, and Kek is saddened to see the old woman’s cow in poor condition because Lou can not take care of it. Soon Kek has a job taking care of Lou’s cow. He names the cow Gol, meaning “family” in his native tongue.
In the end Hannah, Lou, and Gol will help Kek adjust to his new life in America, and the pain and joy that he will experience along the way.
“Home of the Brave” is a brief book, written in a poetic style that reflects Kek’s simple sentences as he learns English. “Home of the Brave” is a sensitive story that covers many of the issues faced by new immigrants from third world countries, from misunderstandings of appliances, to the struggle to learn English, to racism.
Katherine Applegate’s “Home of the Brave” isn’t a particularly noteworthy book, but it is a reasonably decent read.
Inkweaver Book Rating: