Jonathan Lethem’s latest novel is The Feral Detective. He is the Roy Edward Disney ’51 Professor of Creative Writing at Pomona. (October 2019)

IN THE REVIEW

Snowden in the Labyrinth

Edward Snowden; illustration by Joanna Neborsky

Permanent Record

by Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden might seem forever defined by a single act—his decision to leak highly classified information copied from the NSA—and a single moment in time. Having gazed through the windows of the panopticon, he experienced that rarity, a moment of vision: The world must be told these things I know. Against absurd odds, he delivered his knowledge to us. Now, in Permanent Record, he proposes to explain to you, by first explaining to himself, how he became (both how he was formed, and why he chose to become) the person playing this watershed walk-on part on the recent historical stage.