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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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  •  
    S. Tinkler 08-01-15
    S. Tinkler 08-01-15

    LuscombesFly

    ratings
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    "Peace Found after a Life of Hardship"

    Well written and well narrated story. I see why it would make a good movie. The man's life is very inspirational. He endured all manner of cruelties developed by the Japanese during WWII. And he did break. But then he became unbroken again. Read this and take heed. We are on the brink of repeating this history.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emily 08-01-15
    Emily 08-01-15
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    "Powerful"

    Such a powerful story--very well written and narrated. Makes Long trips enjoyable and quick!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    gb 08-01-15
    gb 08-01-15 Member Since 2015
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    Story
    "OK if you're into this."
    Would you listen to Unbroken again? Why?

    Yes, because it is a real story, war is a horrific thing. It needs to be remembered & ANZAC Day, Veteran's Day Armistice Day become too festive (IMO). Books like this tell it like it was. There is no romanticizing of the ideals, it was awful, it should never be repeated, but it will be.


    What did you like best about this story?

    Honest, sometimes brutal.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    Yes when the subject met his tormentor again


    Any additional comments?

    Don't buy this expecting a romantic war epic. It is hard work, but well worth listening to.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Organized Chaos Toledo, Ohio USA 08-01-15
    Organized Chaos Toledo, Ohio USA 08-01-15

    JimF

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    "Terrific!"

    An absolutely splendid story of mankind, from youth through the most horrid wartime conditions...his Journey is quite remarkable and worth your time...enjoy

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Brad Bernard 08-01-15
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    "Amazing story"

    What an amazing story, I highly recommend it to anyone. I enjoyed every minute, it seemed to fly by.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kimberly D. Holmberg 08-01-15 Member Since 2015
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    "A Patriotic American Story"

    This story is amazing and one all Americans should hear. I enjoyed Edward Herrmann's narration very much. So much of the story is difficult to listen to, but Laura inserted some welcomed humor. I have not seen the movie, but I could picture every moment through this audible book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Gary Bleazard 07-31-15 Member Since 2015
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    "Eye Opening"

    One who was born long after World War II was over, this book was and I feel of what American soldiers endured during that horrific time. We can only hope that such inhumanity has been removed from the human character as time has progressed.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Derick DeMarche 07-31-15 Member Since 2014
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    "AN AMAZING REAL LIFE STORY"

    The narrator did a great job and the story kept me wanting to know more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Charles R Fisher 07-31-15 Member Since 2014
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    "A Marvelous Telling of Great Redemption"

    The story of these men is amazing, but the way it was written paired with the narrator's work created a perfect read. Parts brought me to tears, but I also laughed with the men too. I couldn't pull myself from this book once I started.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jimmie White 07-31-15
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    "exceptional read."

    appreciated the descriptions of the lives of the POWs and their courage in the face of death.

    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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