Devil At My Heels ( Backlist Book Pick )

Devil At My Heels

This week’s backlist book pick is the book Devil At My Heels.

The story of Louis Zamperini was unfamiliar to many of people until Laura Hillenbrand’s book Unbroken was published in 2010. Louis Zamperini’s life is an inspiring story of faith, forgiveness, war, love, and strength.

Unbroken is a powerful book. It is one of my favorite books of all times. It is a narrative nonfiction type of book and the writing draws you in.

Even those that don’t read a lot of fiction or history type books enjoy Unbroken. It is a book that is hard to put down once you start reading it. 

If you haven’t read it, I highly recommend it, but it actually isn’t the book that I want to talk about today for our backlist book pick. 


The book Unbroken is far from the first book written about Louis Zamperini. Quite a few books have shared his story over the years. One of them was his autobiography Devil At My Heels.

A well written biography like Unbroken is great. But a biography is just that, a biography.

It is someone sharing some else’s story. It is second and third hand information. It is not the story from the original person or source.

An autobiography has the advantage of being from the person who lived it. The disadvantage to autobiographies is that not everyone is a writer. Many autobiographies are tough to read. They are dry, boring, and lack good editing. 

They also can be skewed. They only show the author’s life from his perspective, and he only shares what he deems important. This can be disappointing as it may not show the whole story. 

But a well done autobiography like Devil At My Heels is an amazing resource. 

In 1956, Louis Zamperini shared is story in his autobiography Devil At My Heels. This is the first hand account. It is is story in his own words. It shares what it was like to actually live it. Not from a source, but from the man who survived it. 

Devil At My Heels

Devil At My Heels is not really narrative nonfiction. It is an ordinary man sharing his extraordinary story in a well written way. 

If you loved Unbroken and want to know the story from the man who actually lived it, Devil At My Heels is a great read. If you haven’t read Unbroken, but love a well written autobiography I think you will enjoy this one. 

It is not just a war story either. He is sharing his story of how he came to faith and his running career. It is from his view, which allows the reader to see what he feels is important in his life. It also pulls the reader through the personal stories that captivate the reader. 

Have you read Devil At My Heels or Unbroken? I would love to hear yours thoughts on them if you have!

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