Why this book?
We’ve become accustomed to think of Americans as the bad guys in the Pacific War, because of the Japanese American internment camps and the atomic bombs. But Hillenbrand’s brilliantly accessible book finally allowed us to recall the unimaginable cruelties inflicted on Allied POWs by the Japanese Imperial Army. Compared to their counterparts imprisoned by the Germans, Allied survivors of Japanese POW camps experienced a much higher rate of alcoholism, early death, and even suicide post-war. Louis Zamperini’s story exhibits this quite painfully.