Man vs. Man (Ishmael vs. Rebels) Ishmael finds himself fleeing the rebels, who are bringing horror to civilians throughout the country. Then, when he is in the army, he finds himself killing and fighting against them.

Man vs. himself (Ishmael vs. himself) After Ishmael is taken to a rehab center, he has to find the strength within to forget about the horror of the war, and most of all learn to forgive himself.

The protagonist in the story is Ishmael Beah because he is in the center of the war as a child soldier.

In the beginning, the antagonists are the rebels because of the chaos and horror they cause Ishmael, as well as the civilians in Sierra Leone. Towards the end, it becomes Ishmael because he fights against himself within to overcome and forgive himself for what he did in the army.


After a long, grueling journey, Ishmael finds his way out of Sierra Leone and into Guinea. From there, he makes his way to New York. In New York City, he goes to college and finds a life away from war. He ultimately learns to forgive himself.

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