Hal's Reviews > War Child: A Child Soldier's Story

War Child by Emmanuel Jal
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's review
Jun 16, 2012

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Read in July, 2012

This autobiographical story is written by a boy who never had the chance to go to school on a consistent basis until he was around fifteen. The facts surrounding his life are horrifying and awful, and provide a glimpse into the causes and perpetuity of the use of children in war. His writing overuses some sentences such as "my heart pounded" and "my stomach twisted" to the extent that a huge proportion of his emotional responses seem to be marked by this bodily reaction.
Emmanuel Jal's writing seemed to improve when he began to describe how his music helped and continues to help him heal, which is representative of the role of music in his psyche and being. The passage from child soldier to Rapstar is a rocky one and Jal's charity-raising and struggles to raise public awareness are all the more inspirational after learning about his past.

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