By Laura Hillenbrand
My Rating: 5 Stars
Two questions…Have you read this book? Why haven’t you read this book???? It’s most assuredly going to be one of my top picks for the year. I first came in contact with this book last year when it appeared on a military professional reading list and became one of the most checked out items on the list at my library. And those books aren’t usually that popular but this one was. Now I understand why. I’m not typically a non-fiction person though I’ve been known to delve into memoirs and autobiographies from time to time. But it’s been a while and I’ve generally stayed away from history/War types of books. Even for non-fiction that I’ve found interesting it can still take me months to get through them. So I’m glad that I decided to start listening to audiobooks this year in the hopes that it would allow me to get more non-fiction into my reading repertoire. When I first decided to start listing to audios I began inquiring with my staff what non-fiction books should I absolutely listen to this was brought up over and over. So I downloaded it and gave it a listen and boy am I glad I did. This book was AMAZING!!!! Words can hardly express how much I loved this book. Don’t believe me? Checkout some of the other reviews. Don’t like to read non-fiction? Give this one a try, this is one of those instances where fact is absolutely better than fiction. Stories like this can’t be made up. Trust me.
Unbroken is the story of Louis Zamperini, who was an olympic runner, whose Army Air Forces bomber crashes into the Pacific Ocean and disappears. But Zamperini wasn’t dead, instead he floated on the ocean for weeks on end, only to be picked up by the Japanese and taken as a POW to Japanese work camps. This is his extraordinary story of becoming an olympic athlete from the trouble-maker youth that he was as a boy, to becoming a bombardier for the Army Air Forces, to POW and ultimately his struggle not only for bodily survival but emotional survival from the cruelty of the Japanese and the lasting affects that torture and demoralization can have on the human spirit.
Laura Hillenbrand does an amazing job of telling Zamperini’s story. I was moved in ways that few books have been able to do. I laughed, I cried, and I cheered. I sat on the edge of my seat for most of the book and found myself finding excuses to listen to a bit more. Zamperini’s story is inspirational, unforgettable and will ultimately leave you grateful for the strength of the human spirit. Zamperini is truly and inspiriation to humankind and I for one am grateful that individuals like him exist in the world.
Now go read this book and become as enthralled in it as I did. If you aren’t a big fan of non-fiction books, checkout the audio. It’s narrated well and will draw you in from the first sentence. I guarantee it!!!