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

Front Cover
Random House, 2010 - Biography & Autobiography - 473 pages
1735 Reviews
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE • Hailed as the top nonfiction book of the year by Time magazine • Winner of theLos Angeles Times Book Prize for biography and the Indies Choice Adult Nonfiction Book of the Year award

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 inSeabiscuit. 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.

Praise for Unbroken

“Extraordinarily moving . . . a powerfully drawn survival epic.”The Wall Street Journal

“[A] one-in-a-billion story . . . designed to wrench from self-respecting critics all the blurby adjectives we normally try to avoid: It is amazing, unforgettable, gripping, harrowing, chilling, and inspiring.”—New York

“Staggering . . . mesmerizing . . . Hillenbrand's writing is so ferociously cinematic, the events she describes so incredible, you don't dare take your eyes off the page.”People

“A meticulous, soaring and beautifully written account of an extraordinary life.”—The Washington Post

“Ambitious and powerful . . . a startling narrative and an inspirational book.”—The New York Times Book Review

“Marvelous . . . Unbroken is wonderful twice over, for the tale it tells and for the way it's told. . . . It manages maximum velocity with no loss of subtlety.”Newsweek

“Moving and, yes, inspirational . . . [Laura] Hillenbrand's unforgettable book . . . deserve[s] pride of place alongside the best works of literature that chart the complications and the hard-won triumphs of so-called ordinary Americans and their extraordinary time.”—Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air

“Hillenbrand . . . tells [this] story with cool elegance but at a thrilling sprinter's pace.”Time

Unbroken is too much book to hope for: a hellride of a story in the grip of the one writer who can handle it.”—Christopher McDougall, author ofBorn to Run

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Immense piece of research and story telling. - Goodreads
Hard to read and hard to put down. - Goodreads
Amazing story, amazing writing. - Goodreads
A GRIPPING page turner! - Goodreads
Terrible writing, boring story telling. - Goodreads
Excellent book, well researched and presented. - Goodreads

Review: Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

User Review  - nonna - Christianbook.com

As a child, Louis (Louie) Zamperini could not sit still. He was destructive, rebellious, daring, and a thief. His father was always having to apologize, or make amends for something Louis had said or ... Read full review

Review: Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption

User Review  - Missymoo3 - Christianbook.com

Loved this book, read it in 2 days! It makes me sick that human beings are capable of such horrendous cruelty. But after suffering all that evil Louis still turned to God. It certainly puts your own ... Read full review

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About the author (2010)

Laura Hillenbrand is the author of the #1 New York Times bestsellerSeabiscuit: An American Legend, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, won the Book Sense Book of the Year Award and the William Hill Sports Book of the Year Award, landed on more than fifteen best-of-the-year lists, and inspired the film Seabiscuit, which was nominated for seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture. Hillenbrand'sNew Yorker article, “A Sudden Illness,” won the 2004 National Magazine Award, and she is a two-time winner of the Eclipse Award, the highest journalistic honor in Thoroughbred racing. She and actor Gary Sinise are the co-founders of Operation International Children, a charity that provides school supplies to children through American troops. She lives in Washington, D.C.

Bibliographic information