Jonathan Raban

02 January 2014
336 pages


In a brave new post-9/11 world jumpy Seattle bears little resemblance to the city Lucy Bengstrom dreamed of as a girl. Living alone with her eleven-year-old daughter Alida, she looks to her journalism to make sense of it all.

Yet with Alida drifting into adolescence and the home she's built up for them under threat, it's clear to Lucy that life is changing. Finding herself under intense scrutiny and faced with her toughest assignment yet, she begins to rebel against everything her personal and professional life has taught her.

‘Chastening and darkly funny . . . For all its gloomy prognostications on the way society is heading, Surveillance will only leave you wanting more’ Anthony Quinn, Daily Telegraph

'Surveillance is a work that confirms Raban as one of the most original commentators on the times in which we live’ William Skidelsky, New Statesman

‘A dense human comedy about truth and lies . . . He writes easily, his prose is relaxed, conversational, his observations shrewd . . . Surveillance is a novel for and about a US in which everyone wants to be American and in which security is the new terror. Raban’s offbeat narrative is a cautionary one dealing with the upheaval of the crisis known as Now’ Eileen Battersby, Irish Times