Unbroken, Laura Hillenbrand



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19 Responses to “Unbroken, Laura Hillenbrand”

  1. Adelyn P. Says:

    Unbroken is the story of a criminal boy, Louie Zamperini, who turned Olympic athlete, and then unfortunately, prisoner of war. He was a promising athlete and qualified for the 1936 Olympics. However, when war world 2 broke out he enlisted for the army. He was in a plane crash, surviving many days at sea. He was captured and tortured by the Japanese navy until he was finally freed after Americas victory. His resilience was outstanding and resulted in the ability to share his experiences; something his comrades were not able to do.
    This perilous, and possibly one of the most extraordinary of the many WW2 tales, proves that mankind is never as it seems. Zamperini could have been in jail. This is something people see as bad. But it would have saved him from war. The unpredictability of chance in life is something evident in this story. Unbroken has major elements of perseverance and strength.
    Other books I would recommend if you were intrigued by Unbroken are “Seabiscuit” because it was written by the same auther and sometimes writing style can be a thing that catches a readers interest. Also, “The Guns at Last Light,” could be a good choice because it also spotlights WW2.
    Rating: 4/5 stars

  2. Cade B. Says:

    “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand, is the story of the life of Olympian and soldier Louis Zamperini. The book starts by introducing Zamperini as one of the sons of an Italian-American family. In his town of Torrance, he was a criminal until he was forced to join his school’s track team. When he found running, he left his old criminal life behind and focused on improving his athletics. He improved so much that he became known as the Torrance Tornado because he was the fastest runner in the area. He kept running for years and eventually got to the 1936 Berlin Olympics. When World War II breaks out, Zamperini enlists and becomes a bombardier in the Air Corps. During one mission, Zamperini’s plane gets hit with mechanical failure and goes down over the Pacific. Only three crew members survived the crash and had to find a way to survive. When help comes, it is in the form of the Japanese. Zamperini gets captured and becomes a POW and has to fight a new fight to stay alive.

    I was originally drawn to this book because it was focused around an Olympic runner. Being a runner myself, I could relate to Zamperini on a certain level. In addition, I enjoy stories about the World Wars, so this book was the perfect mix of interests for me. Hillenbrand effectively held my attention throughout, especially in the parts where there wasn’t necessarily any action happening, like Zamperini surviving day by day on the life raft. The action was real and was described in a way that anyone could grasp the gravity of the situations Zamperini found himself in. Having seen the movie adaptation of this story, I can say that the age-old saying that “the book is better than the movie” holds true. While I enjoyed the movie, the book got me to think past what was just happening in the current scene. The book also, like most book-to-movie relationships, had more content than the film that enriched the story and was able to make the novel have a more engaging pace than the time constraints that Hollywood productions have.

    4.5 out of 5

    Readers who enjoy “Unbroken” may also enjoy “Hatchet” by Gary Paulsen or “Like Father, Like Son” by Matt Centrowitz.

  3. Kobey G. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken tells the story of Olympic runner and World War II survivor, Louie Zamperini. As a young child Louie was a huge trouble, drinking at a very young age. He stole from neighbors and broke into his school. His older brother forced him to run to keep him away from trouble. Louie turned out to be extremely talented at running, breaking many records. He made the Olympic team in 1936 that was held in Berlin. He did not perform to the level he had wanted only making his passion. He trained even harder for the 1940 Olympics. Sadly he was drafted into World War II where he became a pilot. A plane crash leaves Louie stranded on the ocean where he eventually gets picked up and taken to a Japanese camp. Louie incredibly survives this and returns home to tell his stories.

    Evaluation: This story is interesting from the start and has an added amount of interest because of the fact it is a true story. I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for an interesting true story. It’s hard to believe this all happened to one man but I guess that’s the reason for the title.

    Rating: 4.7 out of 5

  4. Iain C. Says:

    What do drinking at age five, Olympic class runners, and POW camp survivors all have in common? The world class runner, Lou Zamperini. At an early age Lou was a troublemaker and trickster, getting into trouble most people only dreamed about when feeling rebellious. When Lou began to age however the need to thieve and rebel became a compulsion to run. Lou just kept on running until he became an Olympic runner in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, and that was the beginning of change. When Lou got home from the Olympics it wasn’t long until the world was at war and Lou was drafted into the air corps. The rest of the book describes the danger of being an airmen and all the hardships Lou faced while being in the air corps. That was nothing compared to what happened while he was a POW surviving the cruel Japanese officer nicknamed “the Bird” and the insane living conditions and torture he faced while he was imprisoned.

    This book is an excellent true story which any athlete will enjoy as well as WWII enthusiasts. It has entertaining chapters of the determination that is needed to be an Olympic athlete as well as the pure strength of will that it takes to survive as a POW and the horrors that occurred while he was there. This book was just full of twists and turns and the shocking realization it was all true that keeps you intrigued and still reading.

    Rating: 4 stars

    Recommendations: Outliers, The Kite Runner, Forest Gump

  5. Shelby C. Says:

    Summary: The novel Unbroken follows the life of Louie Zamperini an Olympic runner. Louis was always a bit of a troublemaker, he would steal food and then have to run from the police in order to avoid punishment for his crime. He was headed down a bad path until one day his older brother got him into running where he had great success in winning high school competitions and eventually moved on to performing in the 1936 Olympics. But soon World War II breaks out so Louie decides to enlist and put his running career on hold. During a battle Louie’s plane crashes into the Pacific where he survives for 47 day on a raft on the ocean. He is then captured by the Japanese navy where he is bounced around from POW to POW camp and becomes the main target for the abuse of a prison commander that beats him regularly. But despite the struggle and trauma that he’s faced he keeps his head up and stays strong. But while he survived some of the hardest situations of war from a plane crash to being subjected to the abuse of a Japanese officer, after the war ends Louie has to deal with the mental damage that comes with participating in war. But despite all that was dished out to him he remains unbroken in his journey of survival.

    Evaluation: The second half of the book didn’t answer the questions that I had about the book and why things happened the way that they did. But it did make me question if he was going get out of the war alive or not. This book is a great source to learn about the struggles that people who go to war for their country face not only about having to deal with the mental trauma but the physical as well. I really enjoyed this book it was quite a page turner. All I wanted to do was find out what was happening to Louie and whether or not he was going to get out of the war alive and if he was ever going to be able to resume his running career. I liked how it talked about how as long as you never give up on yourself you can survive and accomplish anything, like how when it came to running he did the best he could and he became very successful and surviving the war Louie never gave up and stayed strong which made it possible to survive the war. Overall I found this book to be quite enjoyable and it was a great read.

    Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
    To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
    The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

  6. Chloe C. Says:

    Summary: The story “Unbroken”, tells of Louis Zamperini’s life. The story starts off including background information about his childhood. The story tells of how Louie was known to be a trouble maker, however, he had a pure skill of being an incredible runner. Eventually, Louie starts training for the Olympic trials that he was invited to. He ends up making the team and earns the title of becoming the youngest distance runner. He wins with a feat and sets his sights on the 1940 games in Japan. He then joins the Army Air Corps, but then drops out and ends up becoming a bombardier. Louie’s airplane is named the “Superman,” and he and his crew are ordered to bomb a Japanese base. Louie and his crew endure an attack, leaving them wounded and having to help one another to survive. He then gets sent to Hawaii and gets put on a new airplane that is not very good, called the “Green Hornet”, and is sent on a new search mission. The plane ends up crashing into the ocean, Louie wakes up and realizes he’s stuck in the window but breaks free towards the sunlight. Eventually, they were captured by the Japanese navy. They treated the men fair at first, when taken to the hospital to recover. They were then sent to a Japanese prisoner camp. Because Zamperini was known for being a successful Olympic runner, he was chosen to be treated much more violent. Then they were sent to a camp in Tokyo where Zamperini received particularly brutal treatment by a guard the men called “The Bird.” Japanese propagandists attempted to force Zamperini to tell America that he was pro-Japanese, however, he refused and as a result was severely punished. This story ultimately follows the hardships that Louis endured over the course of this time period of his life and how tried to stay true to America by not siding with the Japanese no matter how much they pressured him.

    Evaluation: I truly thought this book was captivating with the intense action that kept occurring. At times it was hard to keep reading the terrible things that Louis had to face but also intriguing on how he was able to stay strong. I would recommend this book to future US History classes that are interested in learning more about this time period through an alternative way. This biography was very well written and recommendable to others.

    Rating: 4.5 stars

  7. Jade H. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is a moving story about World War Two veteran Louis Zamperini. Laura Hillenbrand captures the struggle and triumph of Louis Zamperini during the time that he served. The book paints vivid images of the different obstacles that he had to endure. During World War Two the United States and Japan were sworn enemies and Zamperini was one of the soldiers who survived through a plane crash, living in a raft for almost 50 days, getting shot at by a Japanese fighter plane, and many other aspects of war. Louis Zamperini is captured in a way that makes the reader feel the struggles he felt as he pushed himself to greatness. Along with being a war veteran he was also a great runner. As a runner, he blew away spectators by his speed and endurance. In high school he was the fastest runner, he moved on to the Olympics and dreamed of competing in the Tokyo Olympics. He made it into the Berlin Olympics and saw a glimpse of Hitler’s reign. Louis Zamperini endured many hardships that most people haven’t came close to enduring. But in the end Zamperini lived to tell his miraculous story.

    Evaluation: This book is a must read. As I read this book I was astonished by the fact that someone had lived through everything that Louis Zamperini lived through. This book is definitely a must read, especially if you are into World War Two and learning about the past. There are many true stories out there and Unbroken is one of my favorites.

    This book is a 10/10!

    Some other good books are, Ecotopia by Ernest Callenbach. This book was written 40 years ago but has predicted some of the environmental hardships that we are facing today. Along with that Blood and Thunder The Epic Story of Kit Carson and the Conquest of the American West written by Hampton Sides is a good true story about how America came to be.

  8. Anders B. Says:

    Summary: This inspiring story begins in the town of Torrance, California, where young and mischievous Louis Zamperini has moved to. Louis and his family are Italian immigrants and are looked down upon by the neighboring people of Torrance. While Louis steals, smokes, drinks, and gets in to trouble with just about everything he does, his older brother runs track at the high school. His brother uplifts him from his troubled behavior and gets him to start running. Running track becomes a great occupation for Louis as he becomes such a great runner he races in the 1936 Berlin Olympics. While looking forward to the Olympics in 1940, he is drafted in to the United States Air Corps to serve as a bombardier. This story takes you through the brave and inspiring journey of the time he serves in the military including the tragic realities of death and struggles. Louis and the brave men around him go through intense and agonizing terror as they become prisoners of war in this inspirational voyage. After going through countless obstacles, Louie’s story becomes truly motivational and gives the reader a deep story that reveals the reality of war and becoming a man.

    Evaluation: This biography is truly a must read. It takes the reader through Louie’s life stage by stage showing his transformation into a man and displays the many challenges he faces. If this book gets picked up off the shelves the pages are guaranteed to turn faster and faster as the events occurring keep the reader engaged and interested. This story reveals a lot about what was going on during this time period and exposes how prisoners of war were treated by the Japanese. Overall, this book reveals a moving story and captures the strengths and bravery in the life of Louis Zamperini

    Rating: 4.5 stars

    Recommendations: Outliers, American Sniper, and The Art of Racing in the Rain

  9. Elisa K. Says:

    Summary: Set before World War II, Unbroken takes place in Torrance, California and is about a young man named Louie Zamperini. He starts out as a young boy who is troubled and reckless but as he grows into his teen years, he finds his passion is running. It helps Zamperini cope with the hard parts in his impoverished life but also helps him discover his true talent for running. He competes in many races at his high school and soon sets records for fastest times in pretty much every race. He then goes on to compete in the Berlin Olympics and eventually runs a 4:07.9 mile. Zamerini then joins the Army Air Corps. A little while later he was in a horrible plane crash, killing much of his crew. He and three other crewmen had to survive for 46 days until they were rescued. But when they were rescued they were brought to a Japanese concentration camp and Zamperini was tortured and made to work until he broke, but he never did.

    Evaluation: This book was very emotional and heartfelt. It was easy to read and follow and the content could not have presented itself better. Reading about Louis Zamperini’s life and the struggles he went through is very inspirational and makes you realize how strong he really was. Surviving all of the hardships he went through had to be tough but yet he pulled through and never gave in. He kept his sanity and lived to tell his story despite everything that had happened. This book is also very well-written and paints a clear picture of what’s happening on every page.

    Rating: 5 stars

    Recommendations: The Kite Runner, Night

  10. Zubeid J. Says:

    “Unbroken” by Laura Hillenbrand is a great story of a young man Louie Zamperini who goes from being incredibly childish and mischievous by causing trouble, stealing, and dreaming of leaving town. Louie is saved from this childish behavior by his older brother Pete, who turns his whole life around. Pete somehow gets Louie from running away from the police, to starting Olympic track and field. Louie then goes to Berlin in 1936 to beat the 4 minute mile. Although Louis is pursuing becoming a gold medalist in the Olympics, he puts that on hold as he enlists into the army during the second world war. Louie gets drafted into the Air Corps and shot down in the Pacific. This is the story of how he became a prisoner, survived alone stranded, and how he battled for his life.

    This is possibly one of the greatest biographies that I have ever read. Throughout the whole book you get hit with excitement, fear, ambition, and even sorrow at times. The fact that this is a real story and that Louie has actually gone through all of these things shows the reader exactly how important our history is and how life was like for a person in the war. Having read many and pretty much only books about the Holocaust and the Nazi’s during the second World War, it was a great change to be able to read about the Japanese. Not only was this a very compelling story about a man and the struggles he went through, but it also gives the reader a better grasp of what the Second World War was like.

    Rating: I would give this book a 4.5 out of 5

  11. Emma M. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is an incredible story about a man named Louis Zamperini who becomes an Olympic athlete despite many challenges and eventually undergoes the pain of being a POW at a Japanese camp. Growing up, Louie is a trouble maker with a bad temper that often gets into fights with other children and is somewhat of an outcast. His older brother Pete helps Louie use that temper in running and eventually pushes and trains him enough to become an outstanding runner. Louie wins races easily, and eventually goes off to run in the Olympics. But his glory is short lived, for Louie then decides to join the U.S. Air Force and goes down a path he never would have expected. On one fateful night, Louie and some other men fly over the Pacific Ocean in a bomber that is on its way back to a base. The plane crashes into the water, and several men drown. The only survivors are Louie, a man named Phil and a man called McNamara. McNamara eats all the chocolate out of panic as the three men try to survive with the little supplies they have on the raft. McNamara just goes in downward spiral from there, and eventually dies. Louie and Phil are eventually found by Japanese sailors and are then taken to a prison on one of the Japanese bases. The two men are kept under poor conditions, and eventually move to a different camp. The two men move among several different camps, all of which have poor treatment, a lack of food, and other horrible living conditions. At one camp in particular, one of the prison guards named “The Bird” shows a particular hatred toward Louie and beats him senseless despite acting calm and even nice before. Louie’s dignity is tested very much during this time, and eventually Louie’s strength, mentally and physically, begins to deteriorate. After experiencing so much torture and pain for several years, World War Two eventually ends and the POW’s are rescued. Louie goes back to the United States and struggles to cope with PTSD and nightmares and even becomes an alcoholic. He meets a woman named Cynthia and they marry and have a child. Louie then starts to act out violently and loses all the jobs he attains which leads to conflict in his young family. Despite threatening to leave, Cynthia never actually does and eventually convinces Louie to go to an evangelical crusade led by Billy Graham. There, Louie has a spiritual awakening and does not act out or have nightmares any more after it. Louie then leads a peaceful successful life, gets back into running and even runs a leg in the Olympic Torch Relay in 1998. Louie passes away on July 2nd 2014, about four years after Unbroken was written and published.

    Evaluation: Unbroken is one of the best books I have ever read. The detailed and heart-wrenching events leads the reader to feel for Louie and even shed a couple of tears. The story is never boring, and the wording flows very smoothly. It also provided an insight into what POW’s went through during WWII and makes readers realize how terrifying and torturous war really is. Louie’s struggle with his dignity and strength is truly touching, and inspires me along with others. The spiritual awakening that Louie has as well is beautiful in it’s own sense because it shows how much a speech and religion can change someone in a positive way, it gives hope to other people that are struggling. Unbroken is incredible, and I highly recommend it to anyone.

  12. Alex F. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is the story of a boy becoming a man. Louie learns what is it to follow his dreams by becoming an Olympic runner through hard work and perseverance. WWII is in the midst and shortly after the war starts Louie is drafted to be in the air force, a series of hardships and losses occur when Louie’s plane got shot down and he had to survive 46 days at sea before being rescued by yet another unfortunate happening. Before Louie finds himself fighting for his life as a prisoner in a Japanese concentration camp where his captor, Bird, abuses him and works him nearly to death but he endured what he was given and remained unbroken.

    Evaluation: This book was easy enough to follow and kept me turning the page to see how Louie would overcome his next obstacle. He was never one to give up so in that sense the story was very uplifting and fulfilling. Louie’s story is incredible and at some points even unbelievable. I had never thought about how some Americans suffered through concentration camps and it is humbling to see how they were treated. I value the lessons and model that this man’s life creates and hope to have half the strength he does when I need it most.

  13. Max N. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is the tale of a rebellious boy named Louie Zamperini. Louie becomes part of his high school track team after he becomes fueled by his older brother, Pete, who believes it will keep his brother out of trouble. Louie falls in love with running and eventually becomes a world renown track star and competes at the Berlin Summer Olympics. Interrupted by his duty to fight in World War Two, Louie is forced to quit his running career and become a Bombardier for the Army Air Corp. He is stationed in Hawaii where he survives two missions successfully but inevitably finds himself trapped at sea by the fault of an unreliable aircraft, with no land in sight. Survival is Louie’s goal and though he survives his time at sea, he is captured by Japanese forces and becomes a prisoner of war. Along the way of survival, Louie befriends numerous men who often suffer similar struggles to himself and risk it all to make it through the war.

    Unbroken is a heart wrenching book that follows a passionate soldier not only through his struggles as a prisoner of war in a war crime ridden country but also the importance of friends and sacrifice. Written so well that I felt a hint of what he felt, Louie must fight an impossible mental and physical battle caused by his captors, but with his fellow soldiers at his side, he is able to endure the harsh conditions he is kept in. Through the entire book I felt as though I was by Louie’s side, watching him through his struggles and cringing at the sights he witnessed. The imagery is perfect and the plot is suspenseful, this book hooks any reader with the ability to face the horrific realities of war. This is a fantastic book for anyone looking to read a graphic, historical book about World War II.

    Rating: Five stars

    Recommendations: Hatchet, Lost in Shangri-la, A Higher Call

  14. Cassidy K. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken tells the fascinating story of Louie Zamperini. Louie discovers his talent for running after his brother encourages him to join the high school track team to keep him out of trouble. Louie eventually competes on an Olympic level before WWII changes his life forever. Louie joins the air force and manages to survive the poor equipment and other risks before being shot down and set adrift in the vast Pacific Ocean. Surrounded by sharks and baking under the sun, Louie and his crew manage to survive only to be captured by the Japanese. Louie suffers horrendous torture in the POW camps at the hands of a sadistic guard nicknamed “The Bird.” Eventually, the war ends and Louie is removed from the camp and brought back to the States. His true struggle begins after the war, facing the mental scars of war and torture.

    Evaluation: Louie’s story is one of incredible strength and endurance. I was riveted from page one, Louie’s story has something for every reader: adventure, drama, spirituality and family. I was equally disturbed and chilled by the events that took place in the POW camp and delighted by Louie’s engaging childhood, experience as an athlete and his religious awakening. it truly portrays the resilience of human nature and the joy that exists even in the midst of the greatest suffering. Hillenbrand reveals both the raw darkness and the boundless hope that exists in human beings.

    Rating: 5 stars

    Recommendations: In the Kingdom of Ice, Night, Forest Gump, Kite Runner

  15. Jack L-C. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is a great piece about Louis Zamperini. Louie begins the story and seems like he is traveling down a dark and dangerous path. Eventually he becomes a member of the track team where he not only does well but runs his way to the Berlin Olympics in 1936. But soon he is sent to the war where he has traumatic experiences. The book follows his journey and his uplifting true story of survival.

    Evaluation: A very amazing book which really is inspiring. The event he goes through are by no means a walk in the park. The trials he goes through as he tries to survive the war are horrible. He stands up to the Japanese in unbelievable ways that make you rethink how easy you have it. A truly inspiring book it is definitely a must read.

  16. Ben D. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is the biography of Louie Zamperini, a troubled youth who turns his bad habits and pent up energy wholly towards the pursuit of his running dreams. While running Louie finds a will to keep going which proves useful throughout the trials of his life. He becomes so good that he runs at the Berlin Olympics. Soon after the Olympics he joins the army as a bombardier. Louie’s plane is shot down. He and two others escape on life rafts where they battle hunger, sharks, and the blazing sun for days on end before being captured by the Japanese. Louie is then sent from prison camp to prison camp being beaten, and degraded. Throughout it all though Louie stays strong and remains unbroken.

    Evaluation: This easy to read biography will keep you on the edge of your seat the whole time. The story of such an incredible man and the trials he faced are awe inspiring. From spending days on end at sea to hard training day in and day out, to time spent in the Japanese Prisoner Of War camps unbroken demonstrates what someone can go through and still survive. Unbroken gives a harsh view into the reality of the Japanese Prisoner Of War camps. It relives the story of subtle rebellions done by the workers to hinder the Japanese, and the extraordinary daily struggle the men had to endure just to make it to see another day. One of the most inspiring and riveting books I have read.
    Recommendations: Maus, and Triumph: The Untold Story of Jesse Owens and Hitler’s Olympics

  17. Erik G. Says:

    So far what has happened in the novel Unbroken is that Louie and his men had been saved, but not by the saviors they had in mind. They had been captured by enemy, the Japanese to clarify. They were forced to do labor against their will in harsh conditions, and they were not to have any materials that they hold with value. Louie kept a journal and hid it from the Japanese and wrote his experience in the journal. Louie and Frank are living moderately well in the camp (still not good), Louie is a barber and Frank is doing other jobs in the camp. They had planned to escape the camp until it was thwarted, because one of the people that had been making a map had been spotted by a Japanese guard and was nearly beaten to death. One day Louie and Frank are transported to a camp which they think will be better than the camp that they’re living in now. When coming upon the camp Louie met his soon to be nightmare for the rest of life by the name of Bird. Bird was a Japanese warden of this camp, so to speak…. Well more of the enforcer who was feared by the prisoners do to his measures. Louie is constantly beaten by this man in this camp which soon makes him start to think that death is the best way out. The food was distasteful if one could imagine. Throughout Louie’s imprisonment in the camp he was able to make contact with his family from Tokyo to let them know that he was still alive. Although the military claims that he is dead, his family knew that he was alive. Tokyo was later attacked by the B-29 fortress, and the prison camps were attacked as well. The Bird refused to let the prisoners to take cover and after the attack the Superiors to the Bird removed him from power and put the camp under new management. The war was coming to an end, but not for Louie and his comrades. He and several of his friend were called to go to the punishment camps of which he was met with a familiar scream. Labor was unbearable in this camp. Temperatures were so low in this camp and Louie and others still had their tropical gear on from when they were captured. One day Louie was working and one of the guards elbowed him; he fell and broke his leg. He was then assigned to smaller jobs from the Bird (came with them on transportation). A few weeks later the bomb was dropped on Hiroshima and again on another location, and the war was practically over. In the camp all major commanders abandoned the camp only a few were in charge. One day one of the officers told that they want them to fight with them against the Soviet Union because they were taking Japanese territory. They were taking to wash up when B-29 were dropping food supplies in the camps which meant the war was official one to the prisoners. Louie is liberated and finally goes home. Though he faced many demons of recovery, he finds Christ at one point because life, when he got back didn’t have that happy ending. After becoming religious he enjoyed the rest of his days.
    This second part really didn’t answer my questions at all. Because I thought that this book was really going to surround Louie surviving in the ocean for long period of time and then was saved by Americans who all thought that he and his crew was dead. It really took a weird turn though; I did not expect that Louie was going to be captured by the Japanese. Instead of answering my questions it made many more. Like was Louie going to survive this ordeal or how is he going to escape this one? It Really got me on the edge.
    I think the reason why the author wrote this book was to educate and show people of what the war was like through their eyes. The author wanted to show that sometimes the war wasn’t all about the shooting and the bombing, but the survival as person in this war. Maybe wanted to have this written so that people won’t forget of what people sacrificed in this war, of what they gave. This book is certainly a good overview of what the war was like and it almost seems like a tragedy on the world and it almost seems there really wasn’t a victory. Basically it was all side picking up after their fallen comrades.
    I personally recommend this book because I found it to be very insightful. I literally could not take my eyes off the words. So if you enjoy war and survival this may be your book. It takes time to read, but in the end it really worthwhile.

  18. bachbooks Says:

    Unbroken presents a biography of Louis Zamperini’s life before, during, and after WWII. A running prodigy at the high school, collegiate, and Olympic levels, Louis has his sights set on competing in the 1940 Olympics when WWII disrupts his plans. He serves in the Air Force, is shot down over the Pacific, and survives for weeks adrift on at sea only to be captured by the Japanese and become a prisoner of war. In the POW camps he endures egregious conditions and struggles to preserve his sanity, humanity, and his life.

    An engaging and thoroughly readable biography, I raced through Unbroken eager to learn what life had in store for Louie next. I enjoyed the artful combination of distance running, familial bonds, adventure, and survival detailed in Hillenbrand’s book. Having studied both the Holocaust and the internment of Japanese-Americans, I entered the story far less familiar with the mistreatment of Allied POWs at the hands of the Japanese. The author doesn’t appear to shy away from Louie’s faults in his dark days after the war, and I appreciated her tactful presentation of his religious awakening. (As a former camp counselor, I would have liked to learn more about Louie’s life and work at the Camp Victory he created for troubled adolescents, but that is a different story.)

    Rating: 4 stars

    Recommendations: Maus, Night, Born to Run, Snow Falling on Cedars, Farewell to Manzanar

  19. Michael L. Says:

    Summary: Unbroken is about the Olympic runner Louis Zamperini. Louie was a trouble maker from the start: he stole, got into fights, smoke and drank. He, however, turns his life around when he joins the track team. He surprises even himself, as Louie wins and smashes records, he becomes so good that Louie runs in the 1936 Berlin Olympics, but when Louie comes home from Berlin everything is different. The world has gone to war and Louie is drafted to the Air Corps. The book follows his experiences as an airman, as a POW and as a survivor.

    Evaluation: This story is amazing, while I was reading it I had to keep reminding myself that it really happened. The things that Louie had to go through are amazing. He was an Olympic runner, probably one of the best in the world. The things that he went through frighten me, going through one week of what he had to do sounds horrible, but he survived for years. Louie is the definition of strength and determination. This book changed me and made me grateful for everything that I have.

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