A Long way Gone | Teen Ink

A Long way Gone

November 2, 2007
By Anonymous

A Long way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier Review

The author and narrator of A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Sodier, Ishmael Beah, made me feel as if I was there during those horrifying and heart-wrenching times he went through during the war in Sierra Leone where he was forced to be a soldier in the army just to survive. This is a story of a boy that ran away from this revolution that takes place in Sierra Leone during the 90's and made it.

Ishmael is able to recount his experiences in such a calm manner. Not only did he make me see things through his eyes, but also he made me feel what he was feeling. Although Ishmael is the main character of the book, there are many others that are important to the story as well. There is Esther, the kind-hearted nurse that helped rehabilitate Ishmael; Alhaji, one of Ishmael's friends that help him survive as a soldier; the commander, the one responsible for Ishmael leaving the army and being sent to a rehabilitation center in the first place, and the list keeps going.

An imperative theme in the story is about survival, and how such a gentle kid can become a merciless killer. This book helps to show how such a transition can and does occur.

After being separated from his family, Ishmael is forced to run from the approaching war. Along the way he makes friends as well s loses them. When the war finally reaches Ishmael, he is forced to make a decision. He can either join the war effort or guarantee his own death by leaving the village, which is surrounded by the enemy.

Even though this story is very gloomy, it is important for people to know what some children have to go through just to stay alive. I strongly recommend this book; it really made me appreciate what I have.


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