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Unbroken Audiobook

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

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Audible Editor Reviews

Why we think it's Essential - Whether your listening preferences usually point you to history tomes, adventure thrillers, or fiction with well-developed characters, Unbroken will hook you...and won’t let go. Laura Hillenbrand, previously of Seabiscuit fame, tells the fascinating story of Louis Zamperini – troubled youth, Olympic athlete, airman, and survivor – and you won’t believe how interested you’ll become in even the tiniest of details of his life. Much of that interest is thanks to narrator Edward Herrmann, who elevates this tremendous example of narrative nonfiction to masterful storytelling. — Diana D.

Publisher's Summary

On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber crashed into the Pacific Ocean and disappeared, leaving only a spray of debris and a slick of oil, gasoline, and blood.

Then, on the ocean surface, a face appeared. It was that of a young lieutenant, the plane's bombardier, who was struggling to a life raft and pulling himself aboard. So began one of the most extraordinary odysseys of the Second World War.

The lieutenant's name was Louis Zamperini. In boyhood, he'd been a cunning and incorrigible delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and fleeing his home to ride the rails. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics and within sight of the four-minute mile. But when war had come, the athlete had become an airman, embarking on a journey that led to his doomed flight, a tiny raft, and a drift into the unknown.

Ahead of Zamperini lay thousands of miles of open ocean, leaping sharks, a foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.

In her long-awaited new book, Laura Hillenbrand writes with the same rich and vivid narrative voice she displayed in Seabiscuit. Telling an unforgettable story of a man's journey into extremity, Unbroken is a testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit.

©2010 Laura Hillenbrand; 2010 Random House Audio

What the Critics Say

"Unbroken is wonderful twice over, for the tale it tells and for the way it’s told. A better book than Seabiscuit, it manages maximum velocity with no loss of subtlety. [Hillenbrand has] a jeweler’s eye for a detail that makes a story live." (Newsweek)

"A master class in narrative storytelling…Extraordinarily moving...A powerfully drawn survival epic." (The Wall Street Journal)

"Ambitious and powerful… Hillenbrand is intelligent and restrained, and wise enough to let the story unfold for itself. Her research is thorough, her writing crystalline. Unbroken is gripping in an almost cinematic way." (The New York Times Book Review)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.7 (34167 )
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Performance
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  •  
    Lauraliisa 08-20-15
    Lauraliisa 08-20-15 Member Since 2014
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    "One of the best I have listened to all year"

    I didn't want to get out of the car. I can't wait to watch the movie now.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Maryland Mom 08-18-15
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    "Typical Hillenbrand"

    Laura Hillenbrand does it again! With her amazing knack for detail she weaves an interesting and historically accurate tale. I felt inspired by Louis' story. Also, the narration was excellent.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kacy L. 08-16-15
    Kacy L. 08-16-15 Member Since 2017
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    "Phenomenal story told beautifully."

    This book was my first Audible purchase and I lucked into the best choice possible! Anyone who loves suspense, great detail, vivid imagery, and a hopeful story would love this book. Also a great listen for any history buffs or those who love war stories.

    My husband, teenage nephew, and I went on a road trip and no one slept on the 13 hour drive - we wanted to hurry back to the car at stops to find out what would be next.

    "Unbroken" is not a light or short read, but it well worth the time. I highly recommend it to all ages (early teens and up).

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    bdill NC 08-16-15
    bdill NC 08-16-15 Member Since 2015

    bdill

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    "Favorite on Audible"

    That's it. I don't feel the need to write a review. There are plenty of other wordy reviews.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan Hickman 08-16-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Terrific overall"

    Gripping from the start and I'm so glad the book goes into so much more detail into this amazing man than the movie. Some of the torture seemed repetitive but exceptionally narrated.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Edith 08-15-15
    Edith 08-15-15
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    "wow!"

    This story is astounding! I'm glad that it was written so that we can all understand the atrocities of war. it was heart wrenching.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Roger 08-15-15
    Roger 08-15-15
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    "Very good!"

    Amazing listen. I listened to this in my car and found myself missing my turns every now and then because I was so engrossed in the story! Well done!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mark Llewellyn 08-13-15
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    "Great listen!"

    The book's better than the movie and very inspirational. It is performed excellently. We'll worth the time.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    G Robinson 08-12-15
    G Robinson 08-12-15 Member Since 2017
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    "Very nice"

    Reading this book for me took a long time. The story was very good and Louie Zamperini is now in my mind. After listening to this I feel as though I know him personally. Although it was very good, I am not much of a nonfiction reader so it was not the best book for me. I also thought that although important, not all of the information before and after his capture was relevant to the book, and dragged on just a bit too long. Overall though, this book is good and I would recommend it. :)

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mike C 08-11-15
    Mike C 08-11-15 Member Since 2009
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    "Inspirational and riveting!"

    This book is informational, challenging and inspirational. It is a must read for anyone looking for inspiration from the life of an ordinary man living life intentionally.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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