The Gulag Archipelago: 1918-1956 - Edward E. Ericson Jr., Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

I thought I would never finish reading this because I had to keep stopping to think about what I read and keep trying to put things into some kind of perspective. How do people ever recover from such tragic experiences? I take my freedom and civil rights for granted, and I can't even begin to imagine living in a nation where free speech and individuality do not exist.

This was a compelling read, and I highly recommend it. Yes, it will require a time investment, but it's guaranteed to make you appreciate freedom more than ever.