Monday, March 18, 2013

The Stranger by Albert Camus

Title: The Stranger

Author: Albert Camus

Published: Vintage International, 1989

Pages: 123

Summary: Through the story of an ordinary man unwittingly drawn into a senseless murder on an Algerian beach, Camus explored what he termed "the nakedness of man faced with the absurd.  (Taken from Goodreads)

Thoughts: I had been wanting to read a book by Camus ever since reading Youth in Revolt by C. D. Payne and so one day I purchased The Stranger and it has sat on my shelf for a few months, until now when I have decided that in 2013 I should read through my own pile of books and that I should also read some more engaging texts.

I chose this version of the book because I thought the cover looked really cool when I saw it online.  However after receiving said book in the mail I will admit that while the cover is fascinating this version is definitely headache inducing and will really mess with your eyes if you look at it for too long.

Either way, I picked up The Stranger and read it really easily within two sittings.  It’s really short and the writing is pretty simplistic so it is easy to read through but the message in the book is definitely one for ponderance.

Our protagonist is a very interesting and atypical sort of character.  I was surprised by his attitude as he sort of takes things as they come and doesn’t care if good or bad things happen because in the end we all die anyway.  I could see his viewpoint and it raises the topic of why do we do the things we do when we are going to die and should it matter if we die sooner rather than later.

I feel like the end of the book is there to leave you to dwell in your own thoughts about life and death and that Mersault provides an interesting perspective on the matter.  I imagine that my reading of The Stranger will have me considering this for a few weeks.  That being said, if this is how Camus’ books are then I will definitely be picking up the rest.

Source: Purchased

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