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Stasiland: Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall

Stasiland: Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall - Anna Funder I read this book because I recently visited the former East Germany, and I was curious about life in the DDR. This book - the story of an Australian journalist who moves to Germany and searches for former Stasi members and their victims to interview - is very easy to read. Unfortunately, I found myself wishing that it were a different sort of book - one that was more academic and less anecdotal. The stories of former east Germans were both harrowing and touching, and the author does a good job of conveying a sense of fear - with informants all over the country, you never knew when you might be taken in for questioning over some offhand remark.

Recommended, but it might be good to have a grasp of the history and structure of the country before you begin. Funder doles out this information in small doses throughout, but I found myself having to refer frequently to other sources for clarification.