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Unbroken Audiobook
Unbroken
Written by: 
Laura Hillenbrand
Narrated by: 
Edward Herrmann
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 (31197 )
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Michael R Pottstown, Pennsylvania, US 05-22-15
    Michael R Pottstown, Pennsylvania, US 05-22-15 Member Since 2012
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    27
    14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "heart wrenching yet uplifting."
    If you could sum up Unbroken in three words, what would they be?

    Incredible and unbelievable.


    What did you like best about this story?

    The human interest and amazing personal strength.


    What does Edward Herrmann bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    I find it enjoyable to just relax and listen to him read as I concentrate on the story.


    Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

    I laughed out loud and became chocked up during some of the serious and unbelievable parts of the story.


    Any additional comments?

    I find it amazing that humans can be so cruel to other humans with the thought of improving their own self image. I guess that is what you get when you have a government out of control.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Bell BAKER CITY, OR, United States 05-21-15
    M. Bell BAKER CITY, OR, United States 05-21-15 Listener Since 2007
    HELPFUL VOTES
    6
    ratings
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    14
    11
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    Story
    "Fascinating"
    If you could sum up Unbroken in three words, what would they be?

    Fascinating, Sad and momorable


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Louis, of course.


    What does Edward Herrmann bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    He brings out the reality of the story.


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes, It was difficult to put down.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Geoff rains 05-21-15
    Geoff rains 05-21-15 Member Since 2014
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    10
    2
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    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing story "

    For me the beginning was slow but interest in the book increased fairly quickly. I would recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    JVD 05-20-15
    JVD 05-20-15 Member Since 2014

    jvlatina

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Moving and breathtaking"

    All I wanted do is to stay in the car so I can hear more of the story. It changed me in ways I could never describe. I will never think of my own troubles in the same way nor will I complain as much as I used to because now I know better.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MM 05-20-15
    MM 05-20-15 Member Since 2015
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    21
    1
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Amazing Book"
    If you could sum up Unbroken in three words, what would they be?

    Inspiring, amazing, well written


    Any additional comments?

    This book is an amazing tale of courage, will power, and decision making in the most inspirational way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Ryan J. Mascarello 05-20-15

    I am very new to audio book as of last year 2014. I really have been missing out. I travel a lot so it's perfect for me.

    ratings
    REVIEWS
    1
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    Story
    "Deep war story from one of our many heros in WWII"
    If you could sum up Unbroken in three words, what would they be?

    Passionate, suspenseful, and dramatic


    Who was your favorite character and why?

    Louis is obviously my favorite because it is written from his account.


    What does Edward Herrmann bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    There are points his voice makes it really feel like he's the one that was there. You almost forget he's reading a book to you.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

    Well someone already has. Called it Unbroken. I have not seen it yet but look forward to it.

    You could also call it "The American Spirit" or "The war behind enemy lines"


    Any additional comments?

    ****Spoiler alert**** Overall great story. The part where he spent 3 years in POW camps drags on. But that being said it is very important that part of the story is told as so many men died there. And it was a long time for someone to endure that.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Tammie 05-20-15
    Tammie 05-20-15 Member Since 2015
    HELPFUL VOTES
    0
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    7
    5
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    "A hero, a man of honor, a Christian"

    The horrors of WWII illustrate why our freedom is our mostly costly treasure. Time fades the real truth of the evil that rang in world war and the need for confronting evil to remove its wings, it's ability to prosper. May we never forget the courage and bravery of those who serve our country.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sandy Norman, OK, United States 05-20-15
    Sandy Norman, OK, United States 05-20-15 Member Since 2014
    HELPFUL VOTES
    26
    ratings
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    135
    33
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    0
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    "Excellent!"

    This was an excellent telling of Louie Zamperini's life. What a remarkable life he lead. He was a testimony of overcoming terrible trials and then finding forgiveness through Christ.

    I saw the movie before reading (listening) the book. I must say that the book is so much better.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Amanda 05-19-15
    Amanda 05-19-15 Member Since 2016
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    8
    6
    Overall
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    Story
    "Really good"

    Very heartbreaking story that reminds us how cruel war can be and how strong man can be. Hats off to Louis and all the POWs that suffered. Very well written story and I really enjoyed the narrator.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alex 05-19-15
    Alex 05-19-15 Member Since 2013
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    22
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Hard to believe it's true..."

    This book leaves you wondering about the evils mankind is capable of. The narration can be described as "matter of fact" and the "story" like a work of fiction... honestly the reason I didn't give it 5 stars is because of the feeling it left behind and the questions I'm still asking myself.

    Truth be told, this book is extraordinarily well written and the narration is spot on. A total recommend.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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