Study Guide

Unbroken Chapter 16

By Laura Hillenbrand

Chapter 16

Singing in the Clouds

  • The sharks are getting daring. One of them leaps out of the water at Louie, so Mac steps in and whacks it with an oar.
  • Louie decides to declare war against the sharks, as though he's in a production of West Side Story.
  • In something straight out of the Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook, Louie reaches into the water and snatches a shark out with his bare hands.
  • Then, proving that having a screwdriver on a rubber raft actually is useful, he stabs the shark in the eye with the screwdriver. (No amount of italics can do justice to this insanity.)
  • Only the liver of a shark is edible, so they eat the shark's liver (hold the onions).
  • The sharks are not happy about this, and at night on the thirtieth day at sea, a great white rams the bottom of the raft and tries to tip them over. Thankfully, it fails.
  • Unfortunately though, Mac never regains his strength and dies. They drop his body into the sea, where "The sharks let him be" (3.16.31).
  • As Louie and Phil continue to waste away, Louie's mind experiences a strange sense of near-death clarity, and he remembers things that he never knew had happened to him.
  • He also sees human figures singing to him from the clouds.
  • Phil says he saw nothing.
  • On the forty-sixth day, they see an island. Land ho, yo.

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