Unbroken

Posted January 1, 2012 in Resilience, What We're Reading

unbroken-pbBy: Laura Hillenbrand

Reviewed by: Glain Roberts-McCabe

The Premise: When Laura Hillenbrand wrote her book Seabiscuit, she thought it would be hard to find a story as intriguing as that of the Depression-era racehorse team. Find it she did in the story of Louie Zamperini. Unbroken follows the unbelievable story of Zamperini, a former Olympian who is drafted into World War II, gets shot down over the Pacific ocean, is captured by the Japanese, spends years in horrendous POW camps, and emerges to reclaim his life. Hillenbrand combines her knack for storytelling with impeccable research and historical details. Following Zamperini’s life from childhood through to present day, the book provides a glimpse into the realities of war and how average people were forced into exceptional circumstances. More than an autobiography, Zamperini’s story is a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the resilience of the human mind.

The Bottom Line: I have to start by saying that World War II is NOT my genre. I have zero interest. But from the opening chapter of this book, I was hooked. How can you not be when 3 men are floating in a raft in the middle of the Pacific Ocean while being circled by sharks? And you think you’re having a bad day! This is truly is a must-read book for leaders everywhere on so many fronts. Reading about the conditions that POWs faced, in what can only be described as hell-on-earth, made me think that I truly have nothing to complain about…ever. It’s a great perspective changer. Louis Zamperini also embodies the power of the human mind and how, even when tested to extreme lengths, one can emerge from the most vile situations and survive. I really could go on and on about this one. This book was inspiring on so many levels. It encouraged me to think positively, appreciate what I have, and ultimately recognize that no matter what others may do to you, you’re stronger than you think.

Roundtable Rating: Amazing book, amazing story. Highly recommended for everyone.

Check out the book and author here.


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