Gold Mine Processing Associate, Brenda Cook, recommends Unbroken Laura Hillenbrand.
The story unfolds and is derived from the journals authored by Louis Zamperini during his life as a legendary four-mile runner at the Berlin Olympics during World War II.
In 1941, Zamperini enlisted as a lieutenant in the Army Air Force and became a bombardier. His aircraft is shot down over the Atlantic, during which he and a couple fellow troopers survive after spending 47 days adrift at sea. Sharks, weather, starvation, injuries, and madness were tough enough to fend off, but unbeknownst to them it was only the beginning of their nightmare.
After finally landing on shore, Zamperini and the other survivors are captured by the Japanese and placed in a war camp. Zamperini journalizes the brutality and inhumane treatment he and many at the camp endured during the two-year tenure. He especially is treated worse than most because his captors, one especially known as “the Bird” who knew of his Olympian abilities and wanted to mock and break him mentally and physically.
Though disturbing to hear of what some prisoners-of-war had to endure, the story’s importance needs to be conveyed to give an understanding of their sacrifices and also why so many suffer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. Zamperine’s strength, endurance, faith, and mental and physical control helped him survive.
This was a great book and I appreciate our service people all the more because of it.