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On a May afternoon in 1943, an American military plane 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 sagas of the Second World War.
The lieutenant’s name was Louis Zamperini. As a boy, he had been a clever delinquent, breaking into houses, brawling, and stealing. As a teenager, he had channeled his defiance into running, discovering a supreme talent that carried him to the Berlin Olympics. But when war came, the athlete became 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 sinking raft, thirst and starvation, enemy aircraft, and, beyond, a trial even greater. Driven to the limits of endurance, Zamperini would respond to desperation with ingenuity, suffering with hope and humor, brutality with rebellion. His fate, whether triumph or tragedy, would hang on the fraying wire of his will.
In this captivating young adult edition of her award-winning number one New York Times best-seller, Laura Hillenbrand tells the story of a man’s breathtaking odyssey and the courage, cunning, and fortitude he found to endure and overcome.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Auroramyst on 04-10-15
Great Audio Book for Parents & Kids In The Car
This is a wonderful story of strength, faith and making it through extremely difficult times and coming out stronger on the other side. I read the original version and was happy to see the young adult version in an audio book format. My 10 year old son and I really enjoyed listening to it in the car. One word of warning for parents though; the F word is used in one place when they are talking about being in a Japanese POW Camp and they are telling how one of the Japanese guards made one of the American soldiers teach him English. The soldier taught the guard to say the F word as part of an everyday greeting. It was actually a funny tidbit, but just be ready for the one word in case you are listening with kids. Also, some of the descriptions if abuse in the Japanese POW Camps and the sharks trying to eat the men in the boat may be a little intense for young children. But not really worse than some of the popular stories many of us read as kids.
13 of 13 people found this review helpful
By K. Armann on 07-09-15
We all loved it!
I listened to this on a long car ride with three boys between 11 and 13. My thirteen year-old actually stopped playing a video game to listen (a first) and my eleven year-old didn't complain about the long trip even once (another first).
The story is fascinating, and the intense and gruesome parts from the adult version are toned down perfectly for older kids and still good for adults. I think I would have let my kids listen to this as young as 8 or 9 maybe.
One warning , if you are heading to the beach - there's a fair bit about shark attacks.
4 of 4 people found this review helpful