‘Little Family’ by Ishmael Beah: A Family Living in the Shadows

by Cade Johnson

Ishmael Beah’s new book, the novel Little Family (272 Pages; Riverhead Books), tells the story of a chosen family whose companionship and commitment to each other replaces their lost homes, working as an antidote to the slanted and violent institutional structures of a post-colonial nation. The story takes place in an unnamed African country, details about which indicate Beah’s native Sierra Leone, where bribery, political corruption, and class disparities characterize the social order. Beah’s understated storytelling gives the family’s camaraderie and mutual understanding the subtle warmth of ever-glowing embers.  Elimane, the book-smart, eldest member of the group, reads Shakespeare and […]

Continue Reading