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Unbroken A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
WOW! Where do I even start? This biography is absolutely amazing! I learned so much by reading this. This book is well written and evoked many emotions: hope, sadness, anger,disbelief, and more. It also made me contemplate hatred, forgiveness and faith.
The book is about Louie Zamperini, an American who was raised in New York. He game from an Italian family of two sisters and a brother. He was quite the problem child, into mischief of every kind and often not caught. He could have been described as a bully, thief and general miscreant.
His older brother Pete encouraged him to be a runner and helped him train and cheered him on. In highschool Louie developed a love of running and became very good at it. Good enough to go to the Olympics. He didn’t medal, but it was his first go and he was young and had many opportunities yet ahead of him… or so he thought. Life quickly changed.
The US was pulled into World War II and Louie signed up to serve. He was stationed in Hawaii on bombers, assisting with air raids in the Pacific. On a search and rescue mission his plane went down.
In God’s amazing grace he survived the crash with two fellow airmen and then survived 48 days at sea on a raft, often with sharks swimming around the rafts and bumping them hoping to get an easy meal. The men survived on rain water and the occasional fish or bird they could catch. They even survived a Japanese plane that flew overhead and shot at them, taking multiple passes over them.
They survived at sea, only to be washed ashore an island that was held by the japanese. Louis and his friend Phil (the other man didn’t survive long enough to make it to shore) were taken into custody and became POWs. They stayed on the island for a time and then were transferred to a POW camp in Japan.
The atrocities that they experienced were saddening. It is amazing what these men suffered and survived. I don’t want to give away the end of the book, but it is absolutely astounding. God used this man and his experiences in unbelievable ways.
There was a hold on this book at the library and now I know why. I wasn’t able to finish it the first time I checked it out and had to return it and be put on the waitlist again. It was well worth it. I would have liked to meet this man!
I know not every POW in WWII was able to survive as Zamperini did. After reading this book I have new sympathy, love, respect and renewed faith. I need to read more books about our military. They serve us in so many ways and definitely don’t get the respect or thanks they deserve. We have no idea what struggles they go through and survive. This book is an inspiration and I HIGHLY recommend you read it!