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Unabridged Audiobook

Written By: Laura Hillenbrand

Narrated By: Edward Herrmann

Publisher: Random House (Audio)

Date: November 2010

Duration: 13 hours 58 minutes


-Hailed as the top nonfiction book of the year by Time magazine
- Winner of the Los Angeles Times Book Prize for biography and the Indies Choice Adult Nonfiction Book of the Year award

On a May afternoon in 1943, an Army Air Forces bomber 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 odysseys of the Second World War.

The lieutenant's name was Louis Zamperini. In boyhood, he'd been a cunning and incorrigible delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and fleeing his home to ride the rails. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a prodigious talent that had carried him to the Berlin Olympics and within sight of the four-minute mile. But when war had come, the athlete had become 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 foundering raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would answer desperation with ingenuity; suffering with hope, resolve, and humor; brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would be suspended on the fraying wire of his will.

In her long-awaited new book, Laura Hillenbrand writes with the same rich and vivid narrative voice she displayed in Seabiscuit. Telling an unforgettable story of a man's journey into extremity, Unbroken is a testament to the resilience of the human mind, body, and spirit.

Praise for Unbroken

"Extraordinarily moving . . . a powerfully drawn survival epic."-The Wall Street Journal

"[A] one-in-a-billion story . . . designed to wrench from self-respecting critics all the blurby adjectives we normally try to avoid: It is amazing, unforgettable, gripping, harrowing, chilling, and inspiring."-New York

"Staggering . . . mesmerizing . . . Hillenbrand's writing is so ferociously cinematic, the events she describes so incredible, you don't dare take your eyes off the page."-People

"A meticulous, soaring and beautifully written account of an extraordinary life."-The Washington Post

"Ambitious and powerful . . . a startling narrative and an inspirational book."-The New York Times Book Review

"Marvelous . . . Unbroken is wonderful twice over, for the tale it tells and for the way it's told. . . . It manages maximum velocity with no loss of subtlety."-Newsweek

"Moving and, yes, inspirational . . . [Laura] Hillenbrand's unforgettable book . . . deserve[s] pride of place alongside the best works of literature that chart the complications and the hard-won triumphs of so-called ordinary Americans and their extraordinary time."-Maureen Corrigan, Fresh Air

"Hillenbrand . . . tells [this] story with cool elegance but at a thrilling sprinter's pace."-Time

"Unbroken is too much book to hope for: a hellride of a story in the grip of the one writer who can handle it."-Christopher McDougall, author of Born to Run

From the Hardcover edition.


  • Anonymous

    From the first cd, this book was the type that you sit in your car in the driveway listening to it because it is so good.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    Excellent book on life changing events beyond your control and how to survive. Inspiring story for all and will be especially appreciated by history lovers.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • fred

    This unbelievable story is the best book I've read since Coming Out of the Ice. Fiction cannot hold a candle to truth! My day was totally made when I discovered a recent interview on Jay Leno with Louis Zamperini, now 95. An amazing man, a hard to digest but ultimately inspirational read!!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    An amazing story of perserverance, courage and faith. Hillenbrand is an exceptional writer whose novels show the vulnerabilities of men and the courage needed to overcome them.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Albert

    Reading about wartime atrocities can be unpleasant, but this book presents important history about unbridled cruelty and incredible courage that should not be forgotten. It is well-researched, well-written, and well-narrated. If you're looking for Mary Poppins, this will not be your cup of tea. If you are interested in unvarnished truth about World War II, you will be rewarded here.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • morristutor

    Beyond belief, but true. Hard to take in some of the atrocities, but gripping and inspiring.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Jeff B.

    An AMAZING story of Louis Zamperini's (a WWII pilot and Olympian) capture and survival in Japan. I could not wait for my commute to and from work each day. The 11 CDs will go by quickly and there is NEVER a dull moment. I looked up many of the people in this story and Lou Zamperini is still alive today. This is an awesome audiobook. Highly recommended.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • g.w. from Plano, TX

    I would recommend this book to anyone, male or female. It is a great book and I very much enjoyed it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Diane M

    This is an terrific biography of an amazing man who lived through WW 2, lost on a raft at sea for many weeks, then captured by Japanese soldiers and suffered for many months in several prisoner of war camps....each one worse than the other. "Unbroken" is a great title and Edward Herrman is perfect as the narrator.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.

  • Anonymous

    I listened in my car and couldn't wait to get stuck in traffic just so I could keep listening. This story keeps unfolding until the very last paragraph.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful.


by Laura Hillenbrand

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Unbroken, Laura Hillenbrand