Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
Broken into several parts, the book opens with the Introduction. Here, we get a brief glimpse of Louie and his crewmates stranded on water.
In Part 1, we learn about Louie as a boy. At the age of 14, Louie was hauled to the principal’s office, banished from activities. His older brother, Pete, convinced the principal to let Louie join a sport. Pete made a runner out of him. Louie became so good that he qualified for the 1936 Olympics as the youngest distance runner to ever make the team.
Louie joined the Army Air Corps in 1941. Weeks later, Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. Part 2 covers his life at war, from B-24 training to the craft going down. Part 3 entails the surviving crew members grueling 47 day journey in the ocean, only to be captured by the Japanese.
Part 4 is extremely distressful and heartbreaking. To learn of the torture, cruelty, and unthinkable hell these men were put through made me feel ill at times. Finally, the war is over and the POW are released to go home.
Part 5 sees the aftermath of war in Louie. He drinks his post-war life and bitterness away to cope. Though he has married and has a child, nothing helps with his nightmares and hallucinations. His wife, at her wits end, relentlessly asked him to go to a Billy Graham sermon with her. Reluctantly, he went. There, he found God and woke the next day feeling cleansed. He became a Christian speaker, forgave his captors, and opened the greatest project of his life with Victory Boys Camp.
I highly recommend adding this book to your shelf.
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