well read: One day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich

I can't imagine getting through one day in a Siberian labour camp let alone 10 years. Published in 1962, Solzhenitsyn tells the story of  Ivan Denisovich's day based on his own experience of eight years in a labour camp for making derogatory remarks about Stalin. It really is incomprehensible how the prisoners survive the inhumane conditions and the treatment they receive from the guards and each other - truly a case of survival of the fittest. Having said all that, it's not a depressing book to read and the pockets of humour and the small triumphs of the zeks against the system make it eminently readable. Available via Abebooks