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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

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Performance
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  •  
    D. Pearson Monterey, CA USA 07-16-15
    D. Pearson Monterey, CA USA 07-16-15 Member Since 2014

    multifingered

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    "So glad I read this over seeing the movie :-)"

    I had actually ordered this audio book several months before listening to it. In the interim, the movie had become available and I downloaded it only to have it sit on my hard drive. I decided on a whim (I had 2 days off in a row) to listen to the book. Boy was I glad that I listened to the book as it had me riveted! The descriptor words and lively [period-centric] use of certain terms allows one to really become immersed in the story. I actually found myself moved to tears for one part about halfway through the book.

    Do yourself a favor and buy this book. The narrator does a splendid job of keeping the listener entranced and the story seems to unfold at a naturally progressive rate that doesn't leave with you a feeling of hurried anticipation for the next scene. Its a wonderful listen and highlights a very moving story (among the thousands that there were) about one soldier's plight during the great war.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terri 07-16-15
    Terri 07-16-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Forgiveness"

    An extraordinary story of hope and courage.. Forgiveness in its truest form.

    I was completely moved.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Michael 07-15-15
    Michael 07-15-15
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    "This represents a life one should honor"

    I appreciate more then ever what our soldiers endure for the rest of us to have freedom. Also taught never relinquish your self to hatred and be who you can be whatever that is for each one of us.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kathy Loyd AMARILLO, TX, US 07-15-15
    Kathy Loyd AMARILLO, TX, US 07-15-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Exceptional"

    A wonderful testament to man's ability to survive, and the power of God to heal us!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Josh 07-15-15
    Josh 07-15-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Amazing!"

    Amazing story of perseverance!!! We loved this book. Highly recommended. We listened to the book while on a family road trip.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DMM 07-14-15
    DMM 07-14-15 Member Since 2016

    dori.macz6

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    "Excellent & WW 2 was grim"


    Bravery & fascinating. I think all schools should include this into the curriculum


    This is history brought to life





    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Caitlin 07-14-15
    Caitlin 07-14-15
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    "Great book and read very well."

    This is an amazing book about an amazing man who lived through unbelievable horrors but came out in the end unbroken and being used for good. The power of God to save in the end was encouraging and inspiring.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Oscar C. Huerta 07-14-15 Member Since 2016
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    "Mesmerizing. Meticulously-researched. I wept."

    Surprising ending to a masterfully-crafted true story of a man who found final redemption and forgiveness for his shockingly cruel captors, suddenly appreciating how God had woven the mosaic of his entire life -- his record-shattering giftedness, his unending odyssey at sea and his POW barbarism -- ultimately to orchestrate final joy for the man, his family and all of us, his readers and spectators, many years later.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Patrick E. Donnelly High Point, NC 07-14-15
    Patrick E. Donnelly High Point, NC 07-14-15
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    "An achievement"

    As a fan of both audio books and the Pacific War, I only regret that I hadn't listened to it earlier.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Mary Ann 07-13-15
    Mary Ann 07-13-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Excellent Story"

    The beginning of the book didn't hold my interest because I wasn't interested in such in-depth descriptions of the planes and military equipment. However the rest of the book was compelling and heart-wrenching. It was hard to put down. Edward Hermann was the perfect choice for narration. Outstanding!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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  • Iain
    11/9/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Stunning spirit"
    Would you listen to Unbroken again? Why?

    No, but I would be interested in listening to his own account


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Unbroken?

    Too many to mention without giving it away


    What about Edward Herrmann’s performance did you like?

    Well paced, well read throughout


    If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    Survival with courage and dignity


    Any additional comments?

    Listen to this story!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Renata Rissi Silva
    3/21/15
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    "It's a definitely must-read book"
    What did you like most about Unbroken?

    An extremely interesting, involving and touching story. No doubt, one of the best I’ve heard!


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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