[2015] Reuben Fuentes: A Long Way Gone By Ishmael Beah

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[2015] Reuben Fuentes: A Long Way Gone By Ishmael Beah

Long Way Gone

"We must strive to be like the moon."






A Long Way Gone is a book that will keep you on the edge of your seat. It is a book that is about a young boy that gets blindsided by a war and stugglesto survive the obstacles that confront him.

"I nodded in agreement, but I knew the chances of coming back to the village were slim, as we had no control over our future. We only knew how to survive" (Beah 87).

Before the rebels attacked, Ishmeal went to school and was guiding his life to a career. Now Ishmael lives in a world of thinking of now and surviving instead of the future. Everything that happens in his life now is unpredictable. Anyrthing could happen to change his life and even more saddening, end it. His life can no longer be controlled or guided especially since he is traveling without adults, but instead, a group of kids. His future can no longer be planned.

"The prisoner wa simply another rebel who was responsible for the death of my family, as I had come to truly believe." (Beah 124)

Ishmael was once a boy who was running way in fear of the rebels. He has seen many gruesome and horrible things that no boy should see. He had come so close to reuniting with his family until the rebels attacked once again. Ishmael is no longer the prey but he is the predator. He wants his revenge and he now believes that each rebel contributed to his family's death. I feel as if when he says "as I had come to truly believe" foreshadows that he may be brainwashed by the lieutenants speeches.

"You have been great soldiers and you all know that you are part of this brotherhood. I am very proud to have served my country with you boys. But your work here is done, and I must send you off. These men will put you to school and find you another life." (Beah 129)

Ishmael was only a child when he lost most of his family during a tragic civil war. He must survive with a couple of kids and must struggle to get the supplies needed to keep him alive. Dangers lurk in every corner and he must overcome those obstacles and fight to survive. Survival is an important skill that Ishmael must learn to master. Ishmael also becomes a soldier when he feels as if he needs revenge for his family. Ishmael also needs to survive rehabilitation, where his violence could get him into fights. Even at the end he needs to keep on surviving even when he thought the war was over. He needs to survive at all times, even mentally. He needs to overcome his fears and his nightmares to move on.

Ishmael is now experiencing a very important turning point in his life. He will no longer be in the gruesome war and witness death oe gore. Ishmael does not know that he is going to have the opportunity to have a better life. He is brainwashed from all the talks that his commander gave him, he does not know anything other than war or violence. Ishmael is being taken to a new life, but he does not know what a better life or good life is. So he resorts to anger and his old life.

"I've come to learn that if I am going to take revenge, in the process I will kill another person where revenge and revenge and revenge will never come to an end...." (Beah 199)

"If you are religous, I mean christian, worship your Lord today because you might not have another chance." (Beah 114)

The lieutenant is telling Ishmael and the other doliers that they are going to war. He is saying that anything he does or sees is going to be gruesome and most likely sinful. He is the predator instead of the prey now. The lieutenant and the soldiers will show no mercy to the rebels and Ishmael will kill as well as the other soldiers. He knows that the war will change them forever.

This quote refers to a Aha Moment. Ishmael realizes that revenge creates a chain reaction which will only cause everyone to keep causing more revenge. He knows that what he did was wrong. He knows that revenge is never ending but you should never be the one to keep the chain going. You should be the one to break the chain so it never occurs again. Ishmael realizes that joining the army was a mistake, which is the Aha Moment.


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