Unbroken, by Laura Hillenbrand, should be required reading for high school students. It is well written and covers an amazing piece of history. The harrowing tale of Louis Zamperini is timeless, engaging, and heroic. It brings a man's tale to life and makes anyone question their own fortitude.
Could I float in a raft in the middle of the Pacific Ocean for weeks? Without water or food? With sharks circling and bumping the raft? And know that if you indeed see land, it's probably occupied by the enemy (in this case Japan) and you're destined for punishment?
My answer is "No Way". I read this book in awe. It truly is a story of resilience, perseverence, and will to live. Mr. Zamperini survived a plane crash and Japanese POW camps. He was tortured beyond belief, ultimately had post traumatic stress syndrome, and lived into his 90s.
Talk about a survivor - this man was optimistic, strong, and had an extra amount of American ingenuity and gumption. That's the only way to describe this book and it's hero. Oh, he had his faults, but he could answer desperation with hope and resolve.
Excellent read, superb research, and kudos to the hero. They don't make 'em like that anymore.