Unbroken (Young Reader’s Edition) by Laura Hillenbrand
Whit is an 8th grader living in Ketchum, Idaho. He enjoys skiing, playing hockey, and reading.
Unbroken is based on real people and events that took place during WWII. It is an exciting and interesting book that provides a portal into the life of Louis Zamperini, a champion runner and war hero. As a young boy in California, Louis was breaking into houses, stealing, fighting, and running from the police. All of his younger troublemaking was channeled into running, where he excelled greatly. He was so good at running that he went to the 1936 Berlin Olympics. After WWII started, he became an airman for the United States Air Force and fought on the Pacific front. After the attacks on Pearl Harbor, Louis and his fellow airmen embarked on a dangerous mission that led to an unfortunate fate, a small raft with no provisions, and a long, perilous journey drifting in the massive Pacific Ocean.
Louis Zamperini’s amazing athletic ability helped him survive thousands of miles of sunburn, sharks, desperate thirst, and starvation. To top that off, as his raft was sinking, search planes would fly over him but not see them, and his friends were perishing one by one. The journey ends with a fateful capture and time in brutal Japanese prison camps, where Louis and other prisoners were treated cruelly and beaten frequently. Unbroken is a story of perseverance, strength, and the will to never give up. It will make you want to keep reading to find out what happens next.