REVIEW: A Long Way Gone, Memoirs of a boy soilder

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Ok so i started reading this book as an extra credit book report for history(im 16 yrs old) and the book had to be a historical fiction book. I choose this book because it take place in Africa and really interested me. The beginnning of the book was a little boring and the first couple chapters were kind of confusing. But after about 40 books the book got really interesting. Honestly this book has changed my life so much. It gave me an another view on the world. I have learned to appriciate my life, and family so much more. After I finished reading this I wanted to help with the children soilders in Africa and other 3rd   world countries, so now i am part of my school club”invisible children”,  i do volunteer work for this cause. I read this book about a couple weeks before christmas and when i was finished i told my parents that all i wanted for christmas was some money to donate to a charity. This book will dramatically change your life and I think everyone should read it.  And because the author is talking about his experience as a boy soilder living in Africa he doesnt leave anything out.

Below is a paragraph that pretty much summerizes that book:

Living in Sierra Leone, Africa Ishmael Beah encountered an experience that would permanently disrupt his childhood. When an unexpected attack from the rebels came to his home land him and his family fled the area. But durning the chaos of shooting, and bombing he became separated from his family and loved ones. Trying to stay alive he traveled hundreds of miles in search for his family. He arrived at many villiges which were unsure of which side of the war he was on, and resulted as close to death experiences. Through out his journey he saw gruesome things that no twelve year old should have to see, mothers screaming as their infant was shot by a rebel, and the bombing of children. On his way he met other young boys, in the same position as he was. Although they were aware of the war going on, they weren’t sure what or why they were fighting, but the three things they did know was: they needed to find their families, stay alive, and not be captured by the rebels. For they knew if they were captured they would be branded with a hot iron that said “Rebel”, and they would be recruited to become a solider. After a year of wondering through unknown, and unfriendly villages they came across a village who sheltered and fed them. After a few day the chief told everyone that there were not enough soldiers and that if you wanted to stay with the village you would need to be recruited. With no other choice the boys accepted the position and didn’t know how their life would be dramatically changed. At twelve years old he had become use to shooting, and killing people and when regularly using “brown brown” or cocaine it became normal to him. After a year of being drugged and so use to violence, a rehabilitation organization come to the village and took a few boys to their center. The rehabilitation took over a year of being emotionally repaired and going through his withdrawals. When he realizes that he has no family to take care of his(now 15) he gets an offer from the organization to speak in New York about child soldiers. When he arrives in New York he is shocked at the technologies, snow, and doesn’t understand that it is safe. He meets with children from over fifty countries who were previously slaves, and soldiers and connects with their experiences. After the week of speaking and connecting with these other children he gets an offer to live with a foster family in which he accepts. I deeply recommend this book to anyone. It gives you a dramatic view of a different culture and how lucky we are to live in the United States. Beah gives you the details of his experience and everything he encountered and experienced.


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