Setting and Characters in “A Long Way Gone”

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A Long way gone Exposition: Protagonist- Ishmael Beah Main Supporting characters – Friends and Family(Junior, and Talloi, Kaloko, Gibrilla, and Khalilou, Dad.) Setting- Sierra Leone, Africa(Mattru Jong, Mogbwemo) Tone- the tone, in the beginning, is very carefree and content, without the worry or stress of trying to stay alive. This is the tone until he and his companions come in contact with the rebels when they attack his village. Then the mood becomes very intense and scary. Everyone is now worried about the safety of one another and Ishmael is trying not to get seized by the rebels. Summary- Ishmael leaves his village(Mogbwemo) with his friends to go see other friends talent show in Mattru Jong. when they get to Mattru Jong they spend the night and wake up hearing about how their village was attacked by rebels and that Mattru Jong is next. They decide to go back to see if their families are ok but on the way, they realize it’s too dangerous and return to Mattru Jong. He stays there for a while with Ishmael, Junior, and Talloi, Kaloko, Gibrilla, and Khalilou and then they receive a message from the rebels that they are coming. 10 days go by and nothing, so they come out of hiding, but five days later the rebels attack.

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Ishmael barely escapes with his friends. Main Struggle- The main Struggle during all of this is trying to survive. They don’t want to be captured by the rebels and they need to find food and shelter in order to stay alive. They are willing to do whatever it takes to survive and at the same time, they are thinking about if their families are ok and safe. Rising Action: New Characters- Alhaji, Kanei, Jumah, Saidu, Moriba, Musa Setting- They are now in the forest hopping from village to village in search of food. They are headed to the ocean which is another setting. The setting changed because they were driven out of Mattru Jong and Mogbwemo by the rebels. Tone- The tone now is much more intense and dark compared to the beginning. They are filled with worry and stress. This is because the rebels are attacking many villages and they have to always be cautious and watch out for there safety. Summary- Now that they are on their own, Ishmael and his friends are going from village to village in search of food and maybe find relatives. Right now they are struggling to survive and do whatever it takes to stay alive.

The group is trying to stay as hidden as possible but are captured by a village chief who threatens them, thinking they are boy soldiers. They are then saved by a man who remembers them from Mattru Jong. they move on to find a village to stay in but not for long because the rebels attacked and now Ishmael is separated from Junior. Junior is now on his own and stays hidden in the forest for a month. He decides the loneliness is too much and find a group of boys he once knew from school. He decides to stay with them and they travel from village to village seeking food and shelter. They head to the ocean and find a village where they think they would be welcomed but instead they take their shoes and make them walk on 120-degree sand which burns the flesh off of there feet. They get to a hut where they meet a man who tends to them and feeds them but is then captured by the chief once again. They almost meet death but then are saved by the cassette Ishmael has. The chief let them leave without harm. They continue and eventually get to a big village full of people, dancing, and food.

Saidu dies one night after being ill. They find out while in the village the whereabouts of their families and Ishmael finds out that his brother( junior) had just recently been in this village. Ishmael and his friends find out where some of their family might be and go to that village. They run into Gasemu who takes them to the village. On the way, they hear that the rebels are there. Ishmael runs into the village thinking he might find his family but finds nothing. Rebels chase them out of the village and end up killing Gasemu in the process. Ishmael and the other boys are captured by a group of soldiers and taken to Yele which is occupied by the military. They end up working there and realize that it’s a good place to be compared to running and hiding in the wild. The Boy In Striped Pajamas Exposition: Protagonist- Bruno and Shmuel Setting- Berlin, Germany in 1940s Tone – Bruno doesn’t really know what’s going on or why he moved. So the tone is very calm and confused. The people that contribute to this tone are the maid and his family which are telling him they are going to move.

Also, his parents arguing make him confused. Another thing that contributes to this is when he sees the kids in the concentration camp next to his house and doesn’t know what they’re doing. Summary- Bruno moves with his mom, dad, and sister to a new house next to a concentration camp. Bruno doesn’t know where he is or what all those people are doing next to his house. He’s very lost and his family won’t tell him very much. He tries telling his dad he wants to go back to Berlin but he won’t listen. Bruno tries to find things to do so he won’t die of boredom. Bruno writes to his grandmother about how bad it is at his house and the things he sees at the camp next to him. One day Bruno goes outside and reads the plaque that says, “Presented on the occasion of the opening of Auschwitz Camp, June nineteen forty”. He keeps walking towards the fence even though he’s not supposed to. As he walks to the fence he sees a boy on the other side of the fence(Shmuel). They talk to each other and find similarities among themselves. Bruno finds out that they are in Poland right now and he didn’t know it. This is where Shmuel from.

Bruno now realizes that when Hitler came to his house a few months earlier it was about moving to Auschwitz and how his mom was not happy about it. He continued meeting with Shmuel and finds out where he once lived and how he was separated from his family and forced into this camp. Bruno asked why they are wearing striped pajamas and Shmuel says that its because the soldiers took their clothes. Rising Action: Characters: Kotler, Bruno, Shmuel, Mother, Father, Pavel, Gretel Setting: The setting is in Poland now and at a new house next to Auschwitz, a concentration camp. The setting changed because Bruno’s father became a lieutenant and Hitler made them move to Poland. Tone- The tone has become much more tense and scary because of them living next to a concentration camp, but there’s still a little confusion from Bruno.


Shmuel ends up coming to Bruno’s house because Kotler brought him to polish glass. While he is there Bruno offers him chicken and Kotler finds out. Bruno says he had never seen him before. When there Grandmother dies back in Germany, they go and attend her funeral. His mother desperately wants to go back to Berlin. His dad asks everyone what they want to do and his mother and sister want to go back but Bruno says he just wants to be together. Bruno’s dad decides that they will go back within a week. Bruno is very upset and doesn’t know what to tell Shmael. They want to play together at least one more time and decide for Bruno to dress up with the striped uniforms and go inside the fence. They are also doing this because Shmuel can’t find his father and Bruno wants to help.

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Setting and Characters in "A Long Way Gone". (2021, Mar 17). Retrieved February 6, 2023 , from

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