A Long Way Gone Essay. Memoirs Of a Boy Soldier


A Long Way Gone EssayHave you ever heard about kids, who were real soldiers? If no, than A Long Way Gone essay is just for you. We are going to tell you a gripping story about child’s life during the war. The child we are talking about survived the war with all its horrors. A Long Way Gone essays are always interesting and unique, because the storyteller  (Ishmael Beah) told everything as it was. If you will be satisfied with our Long Way Gone essay, you can look through other our works and maybe order something what you really need. Our writing service is one of the cheapest ones.

“A Long Way Gone” – is a scary but at that moment also a fascinating story about a young twelfth years old boy, called Ishmael Beah. As you can guess the narrator told a true story from his childhood. It is the autobiographical book of memoirs. There were hundreds of child soldiers, who could wield AK-47s and took part in different military conflicts around all the Earth. Ishmael was one of these children and he was the first, who decided to describe everybody his story. Despite his age, he was a real soldier during that civil war, which was between Sierra Leone and the Revolutionary United Front .He wrote and published an excellent book about his unhappy childhood – a story of satisfaction and hopefulness. Now Ishmael a successful young man. He is 26.

From The Very Beginning

Ishmael Beah was a kind, gentle boy. But when he was 12 everything changed about him, and Ishmael changed himself. Suddenly the civil war started, it was a great conflict in Sierra Leone and Ishmael’s village was attacked. Almost all of  Ishmael’s relatives were killed by Revolutionary United Front (RUF). The boy was all alone so he decided to go away with his friends. The war was continued and children were wandered in different places, trying to find something to eat and also some kind of a shelter. It was an awful time of violence. During four years Beah saw a hundreds of inhuman atrocities and was forced to kill and torture people in the name of war. Ishmael did not expect himself, that he is capable of such awful acts.

At last the boy became the member of the army and an awful thing happened to him – he turned into a killing machine and was able to different  horrible violence. The boy had to take drugs like cocaine or marijuana. These drugs helped him to become a fearless, courageous and ruthless young soldier.  Now the army was his home and family, and he was brainwashed, because Beah was absolutely sure that every killed enemy is a revenge for his family. Ishmael was a loyal soldier and he killed a lot of enemies. But after a while his Lieutenant sent the boy soldiers over to UNICEF. It was something really new for the Ishmael Beah.


At a UNICEF rehabilitation center the teenager started to fight for his sanity and tried to adapt to civilization. At first many citizens were afraid of him. Ishmael need some time to comprehend everything, to understand what happened and to decide what he is going to do with his life. The boy met a kind-hearted nurse Esther, she helped him to understand and forgive himself. Ishmael came back to his uncle and everything started from the very beginning. A lot of support and kindness from his relatives saved the boy. He did not hate himself.

A New Life

Later Ishmael Beah and other kids like him were invited to the New York City. At such a huge city the child decided to tell every American people about his experience. Ishmael got acquainted with other kids, they also suffered and also survived. In New York City the boy also met his second mother Laura Simms. She was a storyteller and she helped Ishmael understand how it is important to describe his experience to other people all over the world. After reading his memoirs, thousands of people can try to prevent their children from such awful things.

After his uncle’s death Ishmael leaves his homeland forever and goes to the United States to start the life again in a peaceful society. In the USA he was happy. The horrors of the past have disappeared from boy’s memory. In 1998 he came to New York to stay with his new mom Laura Simms. Now Beah graduated from the United Nations International School and Oberlin College. Beah is a part of Human Rights Watch Children's Rights Division Advisory Committee and has talked to different people from the government about the problems of children affected by war. He also has his own Ishmael Beah Foundation. This foundation dedicates to help former child soldiers to find themselves and to be really happy in a nowadays society.

Main Characters

Besides Ishmael there were other characters in his life-story.

Junior Beah was Ishmael’s brother. He was  a little bit older also had such a difficult fate.

Alhaji was also a little soldier. He was the closest Ishmael’s friend. They were together during the whole war, and later together were sent to therapy. Alhaji is an integral part of Ismael’s life. He takes part in many events in the book.

Esther was a kind-hearted nurse. She worried about Ishmael. The boy told her some stories from the war and eventually started to trust her absolutely.  Esther regularly was looking after Ishmael during all the period he was at a hospital. The boy loves his kind nurse, but he never meet her after leaving that city.

Uncle Tommy was Ishmael’s the closest relative. He worked as carpenter and had three his own kids. All cousins were glad to see Ishmael and loved him as their blood brother. Their love was irrevocable and unconditional. The uncle and the aunt knew all the truth about the previous life of their nephew. But they did not stop to love and respect the young nephew; he was like a native son for them. And really Ishmael felt happy in this friendly family. Later Tommy died because of the illness.

The book “A Long Way Gone” will not leave anyone indifferent. It is impossible to read this story without tears. Our essay is just a brief retelling of this story. I am really happy for Ishmael that after such horror circumstances in his childhood he turned in a perfect young man with kind heart. I can say with confidence that this biography is really worth of reading!