The stories of how some of the informants became informants are fascinating. One cooperated with the Stasi in order to obtain exit visas for official travel. Some were Ash's friends seeking to boost their careers, some were just pleased to do their part in furthering the cause of socialism.
Ash was never imprisoned or tortured and could leave whenever he pleased (though he was eventually barred from entering the DDR). He didn't really suffer at the hands of the Stasi but the book is a terrific look at the Stasi's surveillance and intimidation through the eyes of a single individual.
as an account of various people who lived under the Stasi. Also, The File:
The (again, factual) story of someone uncovering their own file and researching its history.
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