Unbroken Nook Edition by Laura Hillenbrand
Click Here to Download the Book On a May afternoon in 1943, a bomber from the Army Air Force crashed into the Pacific Ocean and vanished, leaving behind only a trail of wreckage and a slick of oil, fuel, and blood. Then, on the surface of the water, a face materialized. It was the face of a young lieutenant, the bombardier, who was fighting to reach a life boat and towing himself aboard. So commenced one of the most remarkable journeys of the Second World War. In her long-awaited new novel, Laura Hillenbrand writes with the identical deep and vivid descriptive voice she displayed in Seabiscuit. Telling an unforgettable saga of a manâ€™s passage into extremity, Unbroken is a testament to the irrepressibility of the mind, body, and spirit.
Reviews Louie Zamperini is a scamp of a child, always getting into scrapes, and turns into an incorrigible teenager. He plays pranks, steals, and creates chaos at every opportunity. It seems likely he will grow up into a criminal. But then, with the help of his older brother Pete, Louie discovers running. Most importantly, he discovers that he is exceptionally talented at running. He shatters high school records, running a 4:21.3 mile, and ends up participating in the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. Louie knows that with four more years of training, he could win gold in 1940. He might even end up being the first person to run a sub-four-minute mile. Then, unfortunately, the war gets in the way. Louie finds himself in the Pacific, flying planes against the Japanese forces there fighting World War Two. When his plane goes down over shark-infested water, Louie and his pilot, Phil, and one other airman, Mac, hunker down to try to survive what they imagine will be the hardest experience of their lives. Things are pretty deadly on the high seas, where Louie spends well over a month. The men don't know how much worse things are about to get, though, when they are finally rescued from the sea--by the Japanese. This book is an incredibly detailed and moving story of survival. Louie endures countless hardships but with the help of the other prisoners in the camps is able to go on. The book explores not only the terrible brutality of the POW camps in Japan, but delves into the reasons why some of the guards may have behaved the way they did. The intricate details of Louie's experience brought his story to life and kept me reading even when the subject matter was so painful. This author does such a fantastic job of bringing something awful to life without seeming to sensationalize it. The men in the POW camps were brought to life and I agonized over every day of their imprisonment. This is a truly incredible story, and Hillenbrand tells it perfectly.
What a big smack-down of a change from my fluffy romance novels, that's for sure! I was troubled by how much I disliked the Japanese while reading this book! It would make sense for me to not like the actual people in the story doing horrible things, but I found myself angry at Japan NOW also. Their war crimes were so inconceivable to me that I didn't want to think about visiting their country (something I've been interested in), looking at things from their side, or anything. And I was only reading the book which puts me on a whole other planet a gazillion miles away when it comes to relating to the story! So for someone to be able to live this and then forgive is incredibly humbling. It is almost inconceivable for me to think of people surviving so much and being able to function in life afterwards! Truly, this could only happen through Jesus Christ. The kind of truth in this book is something I don't believe a person could overcome without Godlike power. While I consider myself fairly knowledgeable on WW2, I learned a lot reading this book...both about WW2 and myself. Ouch.
From the author of SeaBiscuit comes this amazing story of resilience, survival, hope, redemption, and recovery. Louis Zamperini was your average boy until he was a teenager. It was then that he learned to run. Setting new records was common for him as a young man. He went to the Berlin Olympics to represent the USA. His greatest feat, however, was his endurance of an Air force plane crash in the Pacific during WWII, being a prisoner of war, and surviving the beatings, the starvation, and the mockery directed his way by the Japanese. Though this book is long, it is very moving. Hillenbrand portrays the emotional highs and lows of Zamperini as he endured the various trials of being a prisoner of war. It is also interesting to see the strength of this man as he and others would intentionally mislead Japanese soldiers as they taught them English, and how they managed to get extra food from time to time. In the midst of it all, one can see that these great men maintained a sense of humor. The reader will rejoice as he experiences the end of the war and the subsequent release of the POWs with Zamperini. What was truly great is the fact that, though this is not intended to be a book for Christian audiences alone, the author faithfully presents the fact that Zamperini fell into the trap of trying to drown his sorrows in booze. Facing a failed marriage, his life fallen apart, with no hope, and seemingly no help, Zamperini heard from Billy Graham (In that great LA crusade that launched him into the limelight) that Jesus loved him, died and rose from the dead for him. Zamperini believed that and was redeemed from his self-destructing ways. Life for Zamperini was only beginning. This is a great book. It is well written. It is moving, and it is so very true-to-life. I highly recommend it.
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