'The Grapes of Wrath' by John Steinbeck
The Grapes of Wrath
By John Steinbeck

Novels that set out to describe grand historical events sometimes struggle with scale: too big, and they lose the particular, the personal; too small, and they lose the immensity, the connectedness of all things. Steinbeck describes the experience of migrating "Okies" during the Depression, and makes you weep on both scales.