This book is one of the best I've read. It details the life of a political prisoner in a Soviet gulag and is written by Sozhynitsyn, need I say more? He is a master. Anyhow, the book sounds depressing, but in fact it is uplifting. You appreciate the freedoms and the creature comforts that you enjoy in a whole new way when you close this book. You will appreciate your life and have great compassion for those whose lives are quite different.