Monday, April 25, 2011

A Long Way Gone

Bookenders will be discussing Ishmael Beah's book, A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, on Wednesday, April 27. Etta McQuade will be leading the discussion.

We will be meeting in the basement of the library.

Everyone is invited to attend.

Ishamel Beah was born in Sierra Leone West Africa in 1980. He had a peaceful childhood until his parents separated. Then the rebels came to his village and his entire family were killed. After months of traveling alone, he came to a village that was occupied by Sierra Leone Military Forces. He was coerced into recruiting and spent the next three years as a boy soldier, witnessing and participating in countless atrocities.

UNICEF workers rescued him and patiently helped him regain his humanity. He was chosen to speak about his experiences at the United Nations, where he met Laura Simms, who later became his foster mother.

He graduated from high school in New York City and earned a degree in Politics from Oberlin College.

“If I choose to feel guilty for what I have done, I will want to be dead myself,” Beah said. “I live knowing that I have been given a second life, and I just try to have fun, and be happy and live it the best I can.”  

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