Other than Ishmael, Uncle Tommy is who i think is the most important character. I think that he is the most important because of his huge impact on Ishmael life. This is shown when Tommy dies. You see how much Tommy's life and death really impacted Ishmael. Tommy is the one who, I think, really made Ishmael into who he was. The walks that Ishmael and Tommy made Ishmael want to open up about his past and what he'd been through.
I think that Ishmael's rehabilitation is amazing. When he first arrived to Benin Home he was very violent and dangerous. But by the time he got out you didn't see an evidence of that violence. Even when the fighting hits Freetown he mentions that he can't go back to what he used to be. He didn't see himself as a soldier anymore he saw himself as a civilian. He didn't want to go back to what he used to be so he left. When given the choice to go back to what he had previously known he chose to move on. He chose to not be that violent person anymore.
The main thing I learned from this book is that you can really move on from anything. You can recover from even the worst of situations. Ishmael lost his family and his childhood and he still recovered. He didn't turn back to the violent life that he had once loved. He decided to move on and become someone completely different, someone better. "I had to leave, because I was afraid that if I stayed in Freetown any longer, I was going to end up being a soldier again or my former friends would kill me if I refused" (Beah 209).
I liked the story told at the end of the book but I wish that it would have ended differently. I wish that Ishmael would continue to tell if how his life was when he got to New York. I would also like to know what happened to his family back in Freetown. What happened to his aunt and his cousins.
I learned outside the book that Ishmael had another book and that he works with UNICEF which are the people that once helped him.