Book Review-Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

Unbroken is the amazing story of Louis Zamperini, who was a survivor of the Japanese internment camps during World War II. A track star in high school, he would eventually compete in the 1936 Berlin Olympics as a runner before attending the University of Southern California. He would end up enlisting in the United States Air Force by 1941, a few months before the attacks on Pearl Harbor and the United States’ involvement in World War II.

In the spring of 1943, Zamperini’s fighter jet had technical difficulties that would cause them to become stranded in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. This would kill 8 of the 11 passengers on board. However, Zamperini and two others would survive the landing, and were stuck out in the ocean with very little food, water, and a small lifeboat. One of the men ate all the chocolate while Zamperini was asleep. This left them in a rage, as the man who ate the chocolate would die after 33 days.

Zamperini was stuck floating in the Pacific Ocean for a total of 47 days. All they would do is eat raw fish they could catch in the ocean and fight off shark attacks. Zamperini and his partner, Pilot Russell Allen Phillips, would eventually flow to Japan, where they would end up in an internment camp.

Unbroken details the horrors that Zamperini experienced during his time as prisoner of war. They would be fed very little food, were tormented to an extreme by the officers, and would be housed in terrible conditions. Zamperini could hardly even move in his cell, since it was that small. Rats and mice infested the entire facility. Many times, Zamperini thought he would eventually die where he was.

After nearly two years of torture, President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared the war to be over between the United States and Japan with Germany. This set free the prisoners of war, along with Zamperini.

He shocked his family by coming home with the image of a skeleton. However, it was considered a miracle, since he was declared DIA by the United States military 2 years before. He would struggle with PTSD during his first years back home. He desperately wanted revenge against those who torchered him during his time in Japan. Especially against his most brutal tormenter, Mutsuhiro “The Bird” Watanabe. However, Zamperini was eventually saved by God, and learned forgiveness for all those who trespassed against him.

Unbroken is a great read that will teach anyone survival during the hardest of times. It will literally make us greatful for what we have. Can you imagine being out at sea for 47 days? With little food and water? Only to arrive in Japan and be torchered as a prisoner of war? With the detailed descriptions of the events Zamperini experienced, reading Unbroken will make you feel as if you have experienced this same scenario. This is a great story of a man who fought his way to survival when all the odds were against him. Happy reading!



Hi everyone, my name is Christian Adams. I am currently an undergraduate student majoring in sociology who is looking to be a career counselor. I want to help others find what they want to do, and show them how to get there. Building this blog has created the opportunity to reach out and help others in need of guidance. I feel you will enjoy the content I post on here. Happy reading!