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Unbroken

A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

by Laura Hillenbrand

Unbroken
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • First Published:
    Nov 2010, 496 pages
    Paperback:
    Jul 2014, 528 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

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Reviews

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There are currently 13 reader reviews for Unbroken
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Marjorie Hartwell (01/14/11)

Astonishing!!
Words fail me. I know the Pacific theater was hell. My father served on a destroyer escort and was on the Okinawa picket line. He saw a lot of action. But THIS story is almost unbelievable - how do men survive such brutality?? Every time the Bird picked up his kendo stick I cringed. I believe this book should be required history reading for high school students.
Linda L. (01/09/11)

Wow!
This is a history lesson that you ENJOY learning! Having spent time in Hawaii recently, so, while reading this book I was grabbing maps to see history 'come alive' in the old military bases and places I spent time at.

It's a page-turner, so do not plan alot of other activities until you are done--which won't take long!

Cannot wait for a movie on this book--perhaps FINALLY we will get one that's not automated cartoons catering to kiddies and instead tell a historic and educating story!!
WJF III (11/26/10)

"Unbroken"
One of the best books I have read on many fronts.

First in terms of WWII, books, this book is up there with Ambrose ("Band of Brothers" et al) and "Flags of Our Fathers."
Second, in terms of human courage, faith and the "American-never-say-die" attitude this book is second to none.
Thirdly, the incredibly cruel treatment of the Allied POWS, puts to rest any second guessing by historians of Pres Truman for dropping the atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Extremely well written---it is "truly a page turner."

Congrats to Ms. Hillenbrand. Mr. Zamperini and his comrades are TRUE American Heroes.
avid (11/17/10)

Not just a war book
What an awesome story! I love that the subject of this book is still alive. (I marveled throughout the book at how that is possible, though). This was one of the most vivid accounts of survival I have ever read. Also very educational - we all know about the horrors that the Germans committed during WWII, but what about the Japanese? I was truly enlightened and moved reading "Unbroken", and would recommend it to anyone. If this doesn't make a best-seller list soon, I'd be very surprised. Widespread appeal to all of humanity.
norway girl (11/09/10)

Forrest Gump,Chariots of Fire and Bridge Over River Kwai wrapped up in one extraordinary TRUE story !
I have just finished an advanced copy of Unbroken, the true story of Louis Zamperini and realized I have read the next New York Times Bestseller and looked up to see if it had already been optioned for a movie, because that is what I saw when I was reading it; an Oscar Award film playing from the pages of an incredible but absolutely true story.

Ms. Hillenbrand is the award winning, #1 New York times Bestselling Author of Seabiscuit and it took seven years to research and write this book. On the cover sheet in the advance reader copy a publishing executive writes to readers that she is humbled to write about this book, the author and its subject. I was certainly humbled to read it. Ms Hillenbrand very successfully brings Louie’s life, from his mischievous childhood, through his Olympic experiences, and the extremes of his military service to the reader with such detail as to be physically palpable.
My father served in the Navy in the Pacific and I have always been partial to the history of that theater of World War II so I was drawn by the book jacket to read this. Being from the East coast, I had not heard of Mr. Zamperini. So I have completely consumed by this incredible journey of a book and the life of the man. It carried me through every emotion and I found myself laughing out loud, reaching for tissues, and holding my breath in suspense. Sometimes I was afraid to turn a page and then at the same time afraid not to. From cover to cover, I could not put it down.
As we have just past the 65th anniversary of the end of World War II and come close to the end of 2010 with Veterans Day, I would like to thank Mr. Zamperini for his service and sacrifice (along with my father and those who suffered and gave their lives for our country) and sincere and heartfelt appreciation to Laura Hillenbrand for bringing his story to us and those of us descended from the greatest generation.
Don’t miss this book. Seabiscuit was a wonderful book. This one is even better !
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Beyond the Book:
  Japanese Prisoners of War

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