Study Guide

Unbroken What's Up With the Ending?

By Laura Hillenbrand

What's Up With the Ending?

At the end of Unbroken, WWII ends (spoiler alert), Louie gets to go home (yay), gets married (woo), suffers from pretty intense PTSD (boo), and ultimately realizes how freaking awesome he his (the man punched out a shark for Shmoop's sake) and lives happily ever after, finding religion in a Billy Graham tent and preaching inspirational sermons around the country.

That's the last chapter of Unbroken. Then there's the epilogue, which has so many twists and turns it feels like The Usual Suspects.The Bird, who once faked his own death, turns out to be alive and goes on 60 Minutes to confess his war crimes. Louie, who's thought the man dead and finally forgiven him, discovers he's still alive and heads to Japan to meet him, but the Bird isn't down. Louie still manages to find it in his newfound faith to forgive everyone who ever harmed him, and he runs the Olympic torch past one of the POW camps he suffered in.

It's pretty darn inspiring, especially since Louie isn't bitter or angry about all that he's suffered. And the epilogue proves that truth is often stranger than fiction.Ā 

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