Hillenbrand's Seabiscuit captivated readers with her compelling story of an underdog horse who rose to great heights. In Unbroken we meet a young man, an unruly teenage delinquent, whose life turned around when he took up running. But this Olympic runner's greatest race happened as an airman in World War II. In May, 1943, while on a search mission, his plane crash-landed in the Pacific Ocean. Three men survived on a raft. This is their story - their hope, their physical and emotional endurance, their will - over an unbelievable number of days on a raft at sea. Louie Zamperini proved himself a champion in this unforgettable story of a man's journey in difficult circumstances. His spirit, will, ingenuity, and resolve lead the reader to admire a great race, well run!
— Margaret, Pittsburgh
In Laura Hillenbrand’s follow-up to Seabiscuit, she recounts the amazing
story of Louis Zamperini, a juvenile delinquent who becomes an Olympic
runner who joins the military to become a bombardier in World War II.
Her meticulous research and engaging narrative style draws you into a
story that you can’t believe is true but no reliable author would put a
main character through such trials. Unbroken tells the tale of a
resilient, resourceful and amazing member of the Greatest Generation.
— Sydne, Atlanta
December 2010 Indie Next List
“Unbroken is a vivid story of Louis Zamperini who, as an athlete, ran in the 1936 Berlin Olympics and then became an airman when World War II broke out. When his plane crashed into the Pacific Ocean, he and two other crew members floated in a tiny raft across thousands of miles of ocean only to be rescued by the Japanese and placed in a POW camp. This book is about survival, emotional and physical endurance, hope, humor, and determination. An absolutely mesmerizing and incredible story.”
— Pam Clarke, Edgartown Books, Edgartown, MA
In this captivating and lavishly illustrated young adult edition of her award-winning #1 New York Times bestseller, Laura Hillenbrand tells the story of a former Olympian's courage, cunning, and fortitude following his plane crash in enemy territory. This adaptation of Unbroken introduces a new generation to one of history's most thrilling survival epics.
On a May afternoon in 1943, an American military plane 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 sagas of the Second World War.
The lieutenant’s name was Louis Zamperini. As a boy, he had been a clever delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and stealing. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a supreme talent that carried him to the Berlin Olympics. But when war came, the athlete became 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 sinking raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would respond to desperation with ingenuity, suffering with hope and humor, brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would hang on the fraying wire of his will.
Featuring more than one hundred photographs plus an exclusive interview with Zamperini, this breathtaking odyssey—also captured on film by director Angelina Jolie—is a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the ability to endure against the unlikeliest of odds.
Praise for Unbroken
"This adaptation of Hillenbrand's adult bestseller is highly dramatic and exciting, as well as painful to read as it lays bare man's hellish inhumanity to man."—Booklist, STARRED
"This captivating book emphasizes the importance of determination, the will to survive against impossible odds, and support from family and friends. A strong, well-written work."—SLJ
"This fine adaptation ably brings an inspiring tale to young readers."—Kirkus
About the Author
Laura Hillenbrand is the author of the #1 New York Times bestseller Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption and Seabiscuit: An American Legend, which was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award, won the Book Sense Nonfiction 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. She served as a consultant on the Universal Pictures feature film based on Unbroken. Hillenbrand’s New Yorker article, “A Sudden Illness,” won the National Magazine Award. Her work has also appeared in such publications as the New York Times, Vanity Fair, the Washington Post, and the Los Angeles Times. She and actor Gary Sinise were cofounders of Operation International Children, a charity that provided school supplies to children through American troops.
“This adaptation of Hillenbrand’s adult best-seller is highly dramatic and exciting, as well as painful to read as it lays bare man’s hellish inhumanity to man.”--Booklist, STARRED
"This captivating book emphasizes the importance of determination, the will to survive against impossible odds, and support from family and friends. A strong, well-written work."--SLJ
"This fine adaptation ably brings an inspiring tale to young readers."--Kirkus
"A humdinger of a page-turner: a noble story about the courage of America's Greatest Generation, personified."--The Horn Book Review