Lorenzo Walker Tech HS & Institute of Tech

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Off the Shelf 0607-30

A Long Time Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier
By Ishmael Beah
Audio – CD – Undabridged
Read by Ishmael Beah
© 2007

Beah's story is an important one to read/listen to - but it doesn't make it easy. The majority of the book is centered on the violent atrocities of the recent genocide in the Sierra Leone civil war. The author was twenty-six when he wrote his story - in that relatively short lifetime, he had not only witnessed but participated in the ugliness of humanity gone wrong. Beah was twelve when rebels attacked his home, forcing him and his playmates on the run with only each other and their childish wits. A year later, at thirteen, he became a soldier and fought in the bloody and torturous war against the rebels, fueled by propaganda, hatred and drugs.

The plot takes you on a roller-coaster ride with hope and despair at many turns. Amazingly, Beah's overall perceptions about life took a lucky turn for the better and he outlived the negative aspects of the violence. Reading his account is almost surreal, but there is unquestionably the stark truth written in each line. As he indicates in this interview clip , his story is personal and unique and yet it also reflects a hidden secret about child soldiers world-wide. Though A Long Way Gone is understandably depressing, Beah advocates for the belief in humanity's goodness even through the eyes of evil.

My recommendation: 4 out of 5 stars
Submitted by M. Coleman, Media Specialist

Labels: , , , ,


Post a Comment

<< Home