What is the Home, and who stays there in Christopher Paul Curtis's Bud, Not Buddy?

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Tamara K. H. eNotes educator| Certified Educator

By page 6 of the first chapter of Christopher Paul Curtis's early reader's novel Bud, Not Buddy, we learn that the protagonist Bud refers to the orphanage he lives in as "the Home."

In Chapter 1, Bud and his friend Jerry have just been informed that the Home has found foster families willing to take the two boys in at the start of the school year. The two boys respond to the news as if they've just been told that their best friend had died, and we learn it is due to the fact that they anticipate experiencing even more severe hardships than they face there in the Home.

Buddy also informs us that he was placed in the Home at the age of six, when his mother died, and has been in and out of the Home and foster homes ever since. He further goes on to describe the touching scene in which he gets ready to leave the Home, one more time. First, he reassures Jerry, stopping him from crying, by telling him he'll be alright because the three little girls Jerry is about to go live with will likely treat him "like some kind of special pet" (p. 4). Then, he goes through the process of stripping his bed, pulling out his suitcase, checking to see if his belongings are still wrapped up in the blanket inside, and looking over some flyers his mother once owned before her death. He hints that the show announcement printed on one flyer in particular disturbed her so much that it led to her suicide. He ends the chapter by sitting shoulder to shoulder with Jerry on Jerry's bed and sadly thinking, "Here we go again" (p. 8).

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Bud, Not Buddy

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