Unbroken
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Appropriateness of Unbroken for a WWII obsessed 12 year old... Hello. I have heard nothing but RAVES about this book! Do you think it would be appropriate for a mature 12 year old boy. He is capable of reading and comprehending it I am sure, but I am worried that it might be to graphic and disturbing. Thoughts? He has listened to his 90 year old uncle talking about his POW experiences but I think he keeps them fairly tame.
asked by C A Pilon on December 6, 2011
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I became obsessed with WW2 at the same age as your son - cutting my teeth on Holocaust survivor stories made me study the entire history of the war and lent me towards a life-time interest in history so I don't think that such a survivor's story too strong for a mature young man. The hero goes through hell and back and in reading the book and learning about man's inhumanity to man he would also learn about the resilence of the human spirit to rise above all odds - fine lessons for a young boy entering puberty and manhood.
Dudley Ristow answered on February 2, 2012
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Thanks!
C A Pilon answered on December 8, 2011
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Every 12 year old should be required to read it. They should know what those "old" guys went through to preserve their freedom. This is a story of extreme courage, faith, and love of country. Won't hurt, but make any 12 year old a better person. I couldn't put it down.
Trilogy reader answered on February 12, 2012
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Sylvia....I too was a young child (5) at the end of the war and so admired my uncle in his wonderful uniform. It was hard to understand why he didn't want to talk about it, and why he hated chocolate. He taught me to how to hunt, ride horses and generally take care of myself. And that was when I was about 7 and 8 when I was just a little girl. Parents are too protective....a 12 year old should be able to read a book about survival....if not they themselves are very vulnerable. Let him know what men used to be like. Tough!!!
Trilogy reader answered on February 12, 2012
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I have a 10 year old who is obsessed with WW2. I read Unbroken and he is dying to read it. I don't think so. I read many parts with him and skipped about half. Perhaps when he is 15.
K. Zane answered on December 18, 2011
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I was a small child toward the end of WWII and my brother was in the army in Europe. I had many terrifying dreams and a great sense of unease at times and can still remember those feelings clearly. Some of this returned as I read this book, especially as the returning vets from the Pacific were more vociferous in their feelings toward their enemy. I would wait a bit before giving this to a child; however, a truly mature 12 year old might be able to digest it - it is now rather ancient history.
Sylvia answered on February 5, 2012
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C.A. I started getting interested in WWII at that age. I found myself purchasing and reading every book I could get my hands on on the topic. There were a few my parents didn't approve of but it is war.

Trilogy is right. The men of that era (like my father) were very seasoned and tough individuals. Yes, there is some graphic details about the treatment of the prisoners, but it isn't ancient history. Many men today still have flashbacks from the abuse they suffered as POW's during Vietnam. I think it would be an excellent first book for your son.
Jeff Dawson answered on February 20, 2012
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I would not think this book appropriate for my 11 year old son, it affected me greatly and I think is too much for children.
kim answered on December 29, 2011
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I was thinking about reading it to my 7-year-old, but i decided against it. I'll probably wait until he's 10.
Robert Johnson answered on February 1, 2012
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Hi CA, if your son did read and like the excellent Unbroken last year and is still keen on POW stories he might like Under The Wire which I wrote with Bill Ash, now 95 and just about the last of the legendary POW escape artists from the war in Europe. It was a bestseller in the UK, but we've just brought it out in paperback and kindle in North America to mark Bill's 95th birthday this month. He was an American Spitfire pilot with the RCAF. Under the Wire: The bestselling memoir of an American Spitfire pilot and legendary POW escaper
B. Foley answered on December 6, 2012
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