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
"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)
Don't get me wrong. I adore a long read and savor details. However, Hillenbrand goes on and on when three or four examples would suffice. The beginning of the book feels excessively drawn out for the setting up of the overall themes and metaphors that dominate the rest of the story. That being said, this story is incredible--a must read. Hillenbrand's writing is solid, neither pandering to the low level, mass market nor over-reaching in a wanna be Pulitzer grubber's style. Although the writing is overly long in the beginning and after the war ends, the actual telling of the rest of the story is superb and believable. Thanks for the good read.
This brought back many memories for me. Excellent narration and factual. A story everyone should listen to. Times were very different then.
My gratitude to Ms. Hillenbrand cannot be adequately expressed. The depth and detail of this work has not only taught, but has allowed me to feel and imagine beyond anything I ever expected or experienced before. Researching on my own about this marvelous author, I find myself even more moved and indebted.
Note, I will greatly miss Edward Herrmann.
The story kept my attention throughout the book. It was eye opening. I had not heard much about the Pacific theatre of WWII.
I wouldn't imagine ever going through what these men went through. if you want to talk about courage, it's there, leadership, it's there, faith, it is there. Outstanding story telling. MUST READ.
No, but I would be interested in listening to his own account
Too many to mention without giving it away
Well paced, well read throughout
Survival with courage and dignity
Listen to this story!
"It's a definitely must-read book"
An extremely interesting, involving and touching story. No doubt, one of the best I’ve heard!
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