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No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State
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No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State

4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  8,141 Ratings  ·  892 Reviews

No Place to Hide is a groundbreaking look at the NSA surveillance scandal, from the reporter who broke the story

Investigative reporter for The Guardian and bestselling author Glenn Greenwald, provides an in-depth look into the NSA scandal that has triggered a national debate over national security and information privacy. With further revelations from documents entrusted

Hardcover, 253 pages
Published May 13th 2014 by Metropolitan Books/Henry Holt (NY) (first published 2014)
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Gjs1950 Fascinating...has the spy thriller element but very important reading for every citizen. Snowden may go down in history eventually as a hero despite…moreFascinating...has the spy thriller element but very important reading for every citizen. Snowden may go down in history eventually as a hero despite the means in which he was compelled to reveal secrets to the American public. It's one of those things which will always have the angel/devil element to it but I hope history is kind to him. I appreciate his sacrifice but am afraid the US government may never forgive him.(less)

Community Reviews

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May 16, 2014 Raul rated it it was amazing
I wouldn't call it a masterpiece of literature (even non-fiction literature), but I'm giving it 5 stars in lieu of what it truly deserves—five big, heavy pairs of golden balls, because that's what it's all about: BALLS. The lessons of courage and integrity contained within these pages, as exemplified by Snowden, Greenwald, and all the journalists, editors and publishers who supported their efforts in shining a light into the darkest corners of the most powerful government in the world, make it m ...more
Jun 02, 2014 Markus rated it it was amazing
An important book. That's first thing that comes to my mind if i have to say something about it. First big chunk of it reads like a great spy novel as Greenwald shows how he came to contact with Snowden and then how to publish the information/revelations. It's a truly gripping stuff, if you add a score from some 70s conspiracy flick, the paranoia level goes up the 11; and it's all true.

The second part deals with the revelations, if you have read the Greenwald's Guardian articles there's not much
May 19, 2014 Laurie rated it it was amazing
Perhaps the most frightening book I have ever read. I'm not even kidding.

I especially appreciated his argument against the idea "only bad people need fear the NSA," because one, "bad" people have civil rights, too, and two, "bad" is defined as anyone who disagrees with the powers that be. Everyone's rights must be protected or no one is free.
Jun 23, 2016 Diane rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
Recently I've gone down an Edward Snowden rabbit hole. I've now read two books on him, watched the documentary "Citizenfour," followed him on Twitter, and looked up several other interviews.

It's fair to say I'm concerned about the invasive surveillance tactics of the National Security Agency. Snowden, who was a systems administrator, became a whistleblower on the NSA back in 2013, downloading classified documents and releasing them to journalists. Snowden fled the country, going first to Hong K
Wil Edwards
Aug 27, 2014 Wil Edwards rated it it was amazing
One of the most phenomenal books I've ever read. Glenn Greenwald is a pure spirit, striking straight at the gut of the cocky politicians and institutions drunk on political and technological power, all leading lives of hypocrisy as they claim to represent democracy and freedom, while simultaneously tormenting the world with drone strikes and invasive surveillance.

It was utterly thrilling to read Greenwald's first hand account of being contacted by one Edward Snowden, and then meeting him in Hon
Snowden and Greenwald were afraid the information they’d risked everything to expose would be ignored or shrugged off by the public, so inured are we to the pervasiveness of “threats” and its counterbalance “surveillance.” In one of the later chapters, Greenwald addresses the idea of privacy, and why we need it:
“Only when we believe that nobody else is watching us do we feel free—safe—to truly experiment, to rest boundaries, to explore new ways of thinking and being, to explore what it means to
Fabian Scherschel
Roughly a year after establishing contact with Edward Snowden, journalist Glenn Greenwald has published a book that is part spy story, part analysis of the impact of Snowden's revelations and in part a reckoning with the surveillance state his home country has become. Greenwald writes his book with the authority vested in him by the whistleblower, who reportedly chose him based on his work in the past. With this trust comes probably the most comprehensive access to Snowden's documents anybody as ...more
Tom Tabasco
Oct 24, 2015 Tom Tabasco rated it did not like it
I shouldn't be shocked that 99% of the reviewers writing here hail Snowden as a hero. As someone who had the guts to do what had to be done. After all, if you don't like Snowden and don't approve what he did, you are not very likely to read this book.

But I am still shocked nonetheless at the number of people who support this kid's behaviour.

I think civil liberties are enormously important, but I believe Snowden is, in the words of "The New Yorker", a grandiose narcissist who deserves to be in p
May 19, 2014 Steven rated it really liked it
I've been following the story of the NSA leaks from the beginning, so of course I bought this book almost as soon as it was available on Kindle. At first I didn't have the time to sit down and devour it, but I read bits and pieces the first couple of days and I could already see how good it was going to be.

Somewhat frustrated that I hadn't been able to get any long reading sessions in yet, I realized some early reviews would probably be out by then, so I went online to check out what kind of wav
Ashutosh Jogalekar
Jun 23, 2014 Ashutosh Jogalekar rated it it was amazing
Makes as good a case for preserving civil liberties and individual privacy against government interference as I have read, and you don't have to be of any particular political persuasion to appreciate the argument. Also excoriates the mainstream media with righteous, smoldering contempt for toeing the party line and publishing only "government-approved" material. Greenwald appeals to mainstream reporters to revert back to the press's original role, which was to act as an independent bulwark agai ...more
Peter Meyers
May 26, 2014 Peter Meyers rated it it was amazing
Its been a long time since I read an entire book in one sitting.

I find the most disturbing part of this entire story to be the way in which the appointed talking heads tried to slander Greenwald and Snowden afterwards. The story here isn't as much about what the NSA is collecting and what it isn't, as it is about how the powers that be don't like dissenting thought and how easy it is to turn the propaganda machine against someone.

Americans have become desensitized to losing their privacy. What
Radwa Abd Elbasset
Jun 11, 2016 Radwa Abd Elbasset rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: pdf-books
لا مكان للإختباء" لايوجد عنوان آخر يليق بذلگ الكتاب
لايوجد مكان تستطيع أن تحصل على حريتك منه وإلا تكون مُراقب , المواقع التي تتصفحها ،مواقع التواصل ، الإيميلات ،كل حاسوب يصل إليه الإنترنت فصار باحةً غير محمية من الأعين المراقبة.

"إدوارد سنودن" و" جلين جرينوالد " ومعهم لورا وصحيفة الغارديان ..شكلوا فريقًا لنشر تلك الوثائق التي حصل عليهاسنودن وبسببها فقد حقه في أن يعيش حرًا دون مطاردة ،وكان هذا الأمر لايعنيه
مايعنيه أن العالم والأشخاص يجب أن يعلموا حقيقة ماحدث ويحدث لهم من مراقبة مستمرة .

هنا ظهرت "
Feb 24, 2015 Geoff marked it as to-read
This isn't a review of No Place To Hide, I haven't read this book.

These are a few comments on Citizenfour, which I watched last night.

There is nothing revelatory in the film, nothing you wouldn't know if you have been following Snowden and Greenwald's story and the facts about NSA surveillance here and abroad. What the film does give you is a chance to hear Snowden's side of things, as Laura Poitras was with him in the hotel in Hong Kong during the eight days that Greenwald interviewed Snowden a
Yonis Gure
Jul 31, 2014 Yonis Gure rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
And here I thought true, honest, adversarial journalism was a dying art. Glenn Greenwald, over the last couple of years or so, has emerged as one of America’s leading civil-liberties advocate and he stands aloof from his fellow power-hugging journalists who engage in egregious dereliction of duty by not speaking truth to the powers that be.

Beginning with his first contact with Snowden, his sojourn in Hong Kong, his meticulous assembling of the disclosures and his elucidation of the broader impl
Brandon Forsyth
May 15, 2014 Brandon Forsyth rated it really liked it
I'd give this four and a half stars if I could! Greenwald does an excellent job with the book's structure, taking readers through his experiences with Snowden, to the documents he provided and the troubling questions they raise. Finally, Greenwald focuses on the media, and the role they can (but rarely do) perform to challenge the government. The book is focused, angry, and uncompromising, painting a disturbing portrait of the NSA and the intelligence community, and the world they have created. ...more
Arielle Walker
In May 2013, Edward Snowden released classified National Security documents proving that the American government had been spying en-masse on its citizens. He has since been called both a traitor and a patriot, a hero and a dissident, but even his strongest critics were unable to deny the truth behind his allegations: peoples’ privacy was being violated in extreme, secretive ways – and the government was lying to cover it up.

At the time – at least at first – it all sounded to me like the plot of
Brad Feld
Dec 07, 2014 Brad Feld rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics
Amy and I were going to have a bunch of friends over to our house today but we got rained out. So, I read Glenn Greenwald’s book No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State instead.

It was outstanding – 5 stars.

Let’s start with the punchline from Warren and Brandeis in their 1890 Harvard Law Review article The Right to Privacy where they assert that the right to privacy is primarily a “right to be left alone.”

Ponder that for a moment.

It’s a hot topic in my household
May 23, 2014 Caren rated it really liked it
Shelves: adult-nonfiction
The Edward Snowden leaks have been in the news for about a year now. Frankly, they were just a background part of the news that washed over me in a depressive way every day.I was one of those people the author mentions who routinely said, 'oh, my life is too boring for the government to care about'. I saw Glenn Greenwald on a talk show---I don't even remember which one now. I thought he seemed calm, well-spoken, and that he had very interesting things to say, so that, yes, I might like to read h ...more
This book was equal parts fascinating and horrifying. By now, most people are aware of the mass surveillance revealed by Edward Snowden but in No Place to Hide: Edward Snowden, the NSA, and the U.S. Surveillance State, Glenn Greenwald goes through great pains to show why it's so deeply wrong and terrifying.

The first part of the book is about Greenwald being contacted by Snowden, Greenwald's trip to Hong Kong, and the media frenzy that ensued after the first revelation was posted in The Guardian
Twerking To Beethoven
Good book, love the style, a real page-turner. Glenn Greenwald definitely knows how to get the reader's attention, I have to give him that.

As for the content of the book itself, oh well, the NSA spies on everybody so you might as well say goodbye to your privacy. Your mobs are being spied, the NSA can take control of your phone and listen to whatever you say. Not only that, Verizon and At&T are willing to hand everything over to the Agency or whatever secret service in order to keep the Nat
Jan 15, 2015 Clara rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Clara by: Nigel Shakespear
Ed Snowden for President? I can't help feeling the world would be a better place! He and Glenn Greenwald have raised the bar of integrity, courage and sacrifice in our modern era, and they are heroes for it.

No 5-star rating can possibly do justice to the importance of this book. Greenwald's arguments and revelations punch right to the core and make you step back and see the bigger picture in all its frightening clarity. Perfectly balancing the issues of mass surveillance, the role of journalism
Peter Mcloughlin
This fast paced easy to read and clear book is chilling. The NSA is developing a panopticon of survelance that Orwell couldn't imagine. Greenwald lays out the in transcripts he received from Edward Snowden the extent of the spying on Americans and people worldwide. It reads like something out of a dystopian tech thriller but this is most definitely a work of non-fiction. The NSA is on a mission to collect as much information as it possibly can on everyone. There are no boundaries. Right now it ...more
Jun 04, 2014 Charles rated it it was amazing
You don’t need this book to see how obviously off the chain is the NSA. The evidence of that has been all over the Guardian, the Washington Post, the New York Times and elsewhere for a year now. While there is a chapter full of further evidence to that effect, the real value in this book is in the other chapters, particularly the fourth chapter that covers why we should care about the NSA's transgressions.

There are many who wish to claim that those who aren't engaged in anything illegal have no
Christian Bauman
May 28, 2014 Christian Bauman rated it liked it
Great book. So why the 3 stars instead of more? Because Greenwald, I think, forgot the WHO at the end, spending the entire second half of the book focusing solely on WHAT. That stuff was important and appreciated, but lacked the color of the first half of the book, which was a portrait of this guy Snowden as well as the tale of what he went through. Yes, the info on what was in the NSA leaks was/is important, and Greenwald's excellent commentary on it was important. But equally as important was/ ...more
May 17, 2014 Drake rated it it was amazing
Greenwald delivers an amazing insider access on the most important news story of the decade. As a longtime reader of his columns, I found his personal account of the unfolding Edward Snowden story to be fascinating and insightful. Greenwald begins with his initial contact with “Cincinnatus” (the code name Snowden used) and how he almost missed the NSA scoop entirely. Luckily, Snowden’s determination forced Greenwald to take note and the rest is history. Snowden’s motivation for acting and releas ...more
Jun 01, 2014 Jake rated it it was amazing
Greenwald has some huevos. Most journalists serve their corporate overlords well, but he put his freedom on the line to publish Snowden's NSA leaks. This is a very good story about how it happened and why we should care. Now is the time to read it.
Sep 13, 2014 Marlene rated it it was amazing
Originally published at Reading Reality

I chose this book for 9/11, not because it’s a story about the terrorist act, but because I see a clear bright line that can be traced from that day to the fear-mongering that birthed the Patriot Act and all of its restrictions on civil liberties to the security state that Edward Snowden (and Glenn Greenwald) defined in Snowden’s release of the NSA documents.

I keep thinking of the Ben Franklin quotation; “Those who would give up essential Liberty, to purcha
Kathy Uribe
Jul 12, 2014 Kathy Uribe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
This is one of the most frightening books I've ever read, that simple. The five stars are mainly due to the importance of this book, an unusual first person glimpse into Edward Snowden's motives and actions and the actual process of releasing the confidential NSA documents he so carefully collected during so much time. His only purpose, and Greenwald's, was to shed light on the darkest and most dangerous of secrets of the world's most powerful nation, it's move to collect all information, on eve ...more
Jun 01, 2014 Stephany rated it it was amazing
Not even two decades of data privacy experience nor following the Snowden story closely could have prepared me for this book of revelation.

No Place to Hide reads like an action novella that transitions to polemic, leaving the reader with a bit of anxiety about "But what's going to happen to Snowden?!" during the polemic section. But don't worry: Greenwald heightens the emotional stakes once more by describing, in one damning quotation after another, the degree of coziness between specific member
When Snowden's leaks started hitting the press a few years ago, I only followed the story very shallowly. I'm glad I've read this book now, as it goes over many of the secrets that were exposed as well as Snowden's story. In general, I liked all the sections of this book....Greenwald starts with how he got into contact with Snowden and how they worked together to publish, moves on to describe the documents and what they mean, the repercussions of publishing, and ends with a nice rant about freed ...more
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Glenn Greenwald is an American lawyer, columnist, blogger and author who worked as a constitutional and civil-rights litigator prior to becoming a contributor (columnist and blogger) to, where he focuses on political and legal topics. He has also contributed to other newspapers and political news magazines, including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The American Conservative, T ...more
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“Transparency is for those who carry out public duties and exercise public power. Privacy is for everyone else.” 18 likes
“The true measurement of a person’s worth isn’t what they say they believe in, but what they do in defense of those beliefs,” he said. “If you’re not acting on your beliefs, then they probably aren’t real.” 17 likes
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