A Long Way Gone – Ishmael Beah - Notes
Chapter 2 notes
The imagery in this chapter is a jarring contrast to chapter one when Ishmael played music and went to school and had a loving family. It is filled with memories and dream imagery that are horrifying to both Ishmael and the reader. Chapter 3 notes
This chapter is filled with contrasts, especially the days of peace versus the days of war. There is also the contrast of Ishmael cooking dinner as gunshots ring out throughout the town. There is the contrast of people running for their lives over the bodies of those who have fallen. Finally, there is the contrast of a town filled with sounds of life and one filled with fear and death. Ishmael, Junior and the other boys are now officially on the run. Chapter 4 notes
This chapter reveals six boys in a desperate condition. They are starving and there is no food anywhere. Because this is the situation when war exists, the boys begin to adapt to their new lives by becoming what they might never have become before. They steal and they never stop to help others for it might mean the loss of their own lives. Chapter 5 notes
The boys are finally captured and are nearly killed. Once again, new gunfire saves them and they run for their lives. These near misses make the reader feel like the boys are on borrowed time. Eventually, they will be captured for good or die. It seems inevitable. The idea that they have been awakened from a nightmare or a dream is very poignant. These are just young boys who have been forced by circumstances beyond their control to learn survival tactics when only days before they were growing up together and singing the rap music they loved. Chapter 6 notes
This chapter is somewhat of a contrast to the violence of the war. Life continues to go on in the village of Kamator where Ishmael is reminded of life in his own village and how much his brother Junior loved him and cared for him. They were motherless misfits there, and now they are...
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