Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand is an amazing book. It has been in the Kindle Bestseller list for awhile and is definitely worth the top rankings.
Hillenbrand is the author of Seabiscuit, another bestseller that was made into a movie not too long ago.
Unbroken follows the life of famous 1930’s track star Louie Zamperini. He ran in the Berlin Olympics, where he shook Hitler’s hand. That gave me chills. Later, he joined the United States Air Force on the Pacific theater, and fought against Japan. Hillenbrand was able to talk with Louie himself, as well as many of the other characters in her book. So the accounts of the the events that occurred are almost first hand.
Louie’s ability to survive the brutality that was forced upon him is just…unreal. He not only survives several months out on the ocean surrounded by sharks, but also survives brutal beatings from Japanese guards. The amusing part was, that many of the guards in the internment camps had nicknames that you can’t help but laugh about. I guess humor is the only relief in situations like the ones Louie and his fellow soldiers went through.
Reviews are no less than 4 stars:
“Louis Zamperini? Who is he? Laura Hillenbrand’s near 500-page reply will answer the question not only once, but for all. He is the California boy who was a kleptomaniac. He is the running prodigy who competed at Hitler’s Berlin Olympics, shook hands with the Fuhrer, and was almost shot by Nazi guards for stealing a Nazi souvenir. He is the American serviceman who entered the Pacific theater, crashed into the sea, and spent a harrowing forty-odd days floating on a disintegrating raft circled by aggressive sharks, scorched by a relentless sun, and gnawed to the bone by an inescapable hunger.”
“I read this book in two days flat and I know that, had I had the time, I would have read it in one sitting. This is a book that grips you, draws you in and leaves you feeling a slightly better person for having read it.”
“Fascinating account of the resilience of man. The hardships and cruelty endured by American prisoners of war was hard to read and hard to believe. The phrase, “Greatest Generation” is no exaggeration.”