The Brave

The Brave

by James Bird


View All Available Formats & Editions
Members save with free shipping everyday! 
See details


Perfect for fans of Rain Reign, this middle-grade novel The Brave is about a boy with an OCD issue and his move to a reservation to live with his biological mother.

Collin can't help himself—he has a unique condition that finds him counting every letter spoken to him. It's a quirk that makes him a prime target for bullies, and a continual frustration to the adults around him, including his father.

When Collin asked to leave yet another school, his dad decides to send him to live in Minnesota with the mother he's never met. She is Ojibwe, and lives on a reservation. Collin arrives in Duluth with his loyal dog, Seven, and quickly finds his mom and his new home to be warm, welcoming, and accepting of his condition.

Collin’s quirk is matched by that of his neighbor, Orenda, a girl who lives mostly in her treehouse and believes she is turning into a butterfly. With Orenda’s help, Collin works hard to overcome his challenges. His real test comes when he must step up for his new friend and trust his new family.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal

★ 06/01/2020

Gr 5 Up—Collin may be in middle school, but readers of all ages will relate to his journey of self-discovery. Collin is neurodiverse; he counts every letter that is spoken to him and compulsively says the resulting number out loud. This makes him a target for bullies. His father is cold and, after yet another blow-up at school, he sends Collin to live with the mother he has never met. She is Ojibwe, and lives on a reservation in Minnesota. This move appears to be a terrifying life change, but it ends up being wonderful. Collin meets family, learns about Native customs, and becomes friends with Orenda, the girl next door. Through his friendship with Orenda, Collin accepts things about himself, learns to trust, and grows stronger both physically and emotionally. However, Orenda is terminally ill. Ultimately, he learns to give her strength in return. Collin finds inspiration in the books that Orenda introduces him to, specifically the novels of Adriana Mather. Ghosts, spiritualism, Ojibwe culture, and the ability to find wonder in everyday events all blend seamlessly into a powerful coming-of-age story. VERDICT This is an amazing debut full of heart, authenticity, and courage. A recommended first purchase for libraries serving middle graders and teens.—Claire Covington, Broadway H.S., VA

From the Publisher

A Book Riot Best Book of 2020

his lyrical tale will leave your hopes buoyed, your courage bolstered, and your heart on the lookout for magic. A stunning debut and a novel to cherish." —Katherine Applegate, New York Times-bestselling author of The One and Only Ivan and Wishtree

"An amazing debut full of heart, authenticity, and courage." —School Library Journal, starred review

"Endearingly earnest and with a refusal to shy away from the tough parts of life...this fresh and imaginative story has touches of Bridge to Terabithia and is perfect for fans of Wendy Mass’ A Mango-Shaped Space and Sherman Alexie’s The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. Bird, himself of Ojibwe descent, has written an exceptional #OwnVoices novel not to be overlooked." —Booklist, starred review

"It's rare to find a book that gives insight into an intensely specific cultural and cognitive experience, yet simultaneously taps something universal: wanting to be accepted for who you are and find where you fit. The Brave does just that, and so much more. I've never read anything like it. Collin is a kid it's impossible not to root for." —Nic Stone, New York Times-bestselling author of Dear Martin

"Bighearted." —The New York Times

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781250247759
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Publication date: 06/30/2020
Pages: 320
Sales rank: 134,573
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.10(h) x 1.30(d)
Age Range: 9 - 12 Years

Customer Reviews