Don't Give Up, Don't Give In: Lessons from an Extraordinary Life by Louis Zamperini
DON'T GIVE UP, DON'T GIVE IN is a book about one of the greatest figures in modern times, Louis Zamperini. Of course, Louis is gone now; the co-author, David Rensin, notes that the manuscript of this book was delivered to the publisher just days before Zamperini's death.
For those readers who don't know much about Louis Zamperini, you are in for a treat. If you have already read, UNBROKEN, you know what I'm talking about. If you haven't read it yet, get it today.
Louis Zamperini was a man of great character and even greater forgiveness. A wild delinquent as a youth, he perfected ways to commit petty crimes and not get caught. One of his more creative crimes was using a fishing pole to steal merchandise from inside a store. Facing punishment for his many larcenies, he was forced to run in a race. So, he learned to run. At first, he was not very fast, but he quickly excelled, and went on to set records. He competed in the 1936 Olympics, where a young Adolph Hitler remarked on his quick finish. (Zamperini, not quite done with his youthful pranks, later climbed a pole to steal a Nazi flag.)
As an aviator in World War II, he became a prisoner of the Japanese under brutal circumstances. He was beaten almost daily by an especially sadistic captor. Yet he endured and survived. After the war, he was bitter man, full of hate and he dreamed of vengeance on his captors.
Later, becoming a Christian after hearing a young, fiery evangelist named Billy Graham, Zamperini learned to forgive. In fact, he later sought out his captors to personally share his forgiveness. His forgiveness was not a show--it was genuine.
The format of DON'T GIVE UP, DON'T GIVE IN is completely different from Unbroken. This book is actually a series of short, inspiring essays by Zamperini, on uplifting topics such as, Forgiveness, Charity, perseverance, etc. Some of the material will be familiar to readers of Unbroken; however the essays are not so much a biography of the tragic events in his life, but more a reflection on lessons learned.
Louis Zamperini was a great man, and his words are relevant to all of us today. His life story speaks words of encouragement to us. Do not miss the very touching tributes at the very end of the book.
Although I never met Louis, I feel like I knew him. I will miss Louis Zamperini. I'm glad he wrote this book.