The Stranger

The Stranger

Book - 1993
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Random House, Inc.

With the force of a parable and the excitement of a perfectly executed thriller, The Stranger is the work of one of the most engaged and intellectually alert writers of the past century.

Albert Camus's spare, laconic masterpiece about a Frenchman who murders an Arab in Algeria is famous for having diagnosed, with an almost scientific clarity, that condition of reckless alienation and spiritual exhaustion that characterized so much of twentieth-century life. 

Baker & Taylor
An ordinary man is unwittingly caught up in a senseless murder in Algeria.

Publisher: New York : Knopf : Distributed by Random House, 1993
ISBN: 9780679420262
Branch Call Number: FIC Camus A
Characteristics: xxxv, 117 p. ; 22 cm
Additional Contributors: Ward, Matthew 1950 or 1951-1990


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Jul 17, 2019

Originally published back in 1942 - "The Stranger" (aka. "The Outsider") was one of the very first novels written by French author, Albert Camus who was just 29 at the time.

This novel's overall theme and outlook has proven to be one of the best examples of demonstrating Camus' "philosophy of the absurd", which refers to the conflict between the human tendency to seek inherent value and meaning in life and the human inability to find any in a purposeless, meaningless, or chaotic and irrational universe.

"The Stranger" is widely considered to be a bona-fide classic of 20th century literature.

(*Note*) - In 1960 - Albert Camus (46 at the time) was killed (as a passenger) in a car crash.

Apr 29, 2019

How would you punish a guy who doesn't find anything punishing? I really wish I could be as detached from the world as the lead protagonist but then nothing really matters.. not even the fact that I cannot be detached from the World :P A nice read, I recommend it to all!

" ' A 19th century naturalist would have written " A bridge spanned the river." M. Camus will have none of this anthropomorphism. He says, " Over the river was a bridge." This object thus immediately betrays its passiveness. It IS THERE before us, plain and undifferentiated. " There were three negro men in the front of the door was a lady I didn't know...beside her was the director..." 'He likes things for their own sake and does not want to dilute them in the flux of duration.'----Sartre.

Mar 21, 2019

This is a fantastic novel written by Albert Camus. It follows Meursault, who is a young man living in French Algeria during the 20th century. The first part features a diverse set of characters, such as his lover, Marie, the old man, Salamano, his aggressive neighbour, Raymond, and more. The story highlights Meursault’s indifference and unique way of thinking and behaving, which is not accepted by many members of society. This is explored through a deep idea underneath the plot in the second part, where it becomes clear that in court, he will be tried for being different from societal norms rather than for the crime he has committed. While the pace of the plot is relatively slow, the book addresses deep topics and leaves a philosophical impact on readers. I would highly recommend the novel to anyone, and I would give it a rating of 4 stars. @Riveting_Reviews of the Hamilton Public Library Teen Review Board

Jan 16, 2019

A short, simply-written book that explores big, complex ideas. In The Stranger it is easy to see why Camus is seen as Sartre's counterpart in the literature of French existentialist philosophy. The book begins with the death of the protagonist's mother and his subsequent flirtation with nihilism as he deals with this event along with the rest of his everyday life. The true beauty of the novel happens in the second half, when the protagonist's life is turned sideways on what should have been an innocent day at the beach; it is then that he really has to reckon with the forces that we all must eventually face.

Dec 18, 2018

A weird little story that will have your attention from beginning to end

ArapahoeMaryA Aug 26, 2018

In this classic novel, Albert Camus explores existentialism and some of its important precepts.  Through the development of his main character and the conflict he faces, Camus examines man's essence, freedom and vision. 

Jul 29, 2018

A very interesting read. Maybe this has some or little to do with the American archetypes of French people (filled with ennui or existentialist melancholy) but the book embodies this with such an assured voice that it is hard to put down. It is one of those books that is truly worth it for the ending alone.

RogerDeBlanck Jun 30, 2018

Camus's novel The Stranger ranks among the most original and important books of the 20th century. The story takes place in a coastal town in Algeria, the country of Camus's birth. The protagonist is a Frenchman, Meursault, who leads an ordinary, dispassionate life, stripped of religion and personal ambition. When he becomes the assailant of a fatal crime involving an Arab, his past returns to complicate his fate. The novel’s clear, simple prose gives suddenness to the shock and horror of how the tightly-wound plot plays out. The story confronts the absurdity of human existence, and the questions it explores will disorient you like a knockout punch.

Jun 30, 2017

I read The Stranger at the behest of my cousin because she wanted me to read The Meursault Investigation, which probably doesn't make any sense to read by itself as it is an independently-written sequel of sorts. I had never read The Stranger and I typically don't like classics, so I honestly wasn't expecting much. It's a short read, so I figured I'd zip through it, read The Meursault Investigation, write brief reviews for both, and move on with my life. I do have to say, I was very pleasantly surprised. (Just a quick content warning for domestic abuse. It won't be brought up in my review, but it is present in the book.)

The book is written in first person, which is typically off-putting for me, but it wouldn't have worked in any other format. I desperately wish I had read this in school because I'm positive there is so much I didn't pick up on that would have led me to appreciate it even more. The tone is relatively dry and matter-of-fact, which I disliked at the outset. It's kind of a "this happened, and then this happened, and then that happened" kind of story.

Camus starts off the book with the death of Meursault's mother, an event which seems to have little to no impact at all on the man. As the book continues, it becomes clear that Meursault moves through the world like an automaton: he goes about his daily life with barely a hint of emotions. He seems content, if contentedness differs from happiness.

Meursault started off as a flat, boring character, but he became fascinating to me. He has no moral code, he has no real sense of right or wrong. He's not malicious, he just doesn't seem to understand that the people around him feel. He mentions at one point that the deaths of others don't bother him because he'll just forget about them. He expects that when he eventually dies, that they'll forget about him too. He falls into the same trap that many of us sometimes fall into: he cannot comprehend what others are experiencing because that is not what he is experiencing.

I truly felt for him. Is it possible to feel empathy for someone who cannot feel? It's just a projection of my own feelings onto him. I place myself in his shoes and know how I would feel, so I feel that for him. But isn't that exactly what he's doing? He's placing himself in others' shoes and assuming they feel (or don't feel) the same way he does. I don't know, it was a fascinating concept, and very well-executed. The Meursault Investigation is next on my TBR, but I'll also probably look into some essays and articles on The Stranger so I can wrap my head around this all a little more.

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ArapahoeMaryA Aug 26, 2018

Throughout the whole absurd life I’d lived, a dark wind had been rising toward me… What did other people’s death’s or a mother’s love matter to me; what did his God or the lives people choose or the fate they think they elect matter to me…What would it matter if he were accused of murder and then executed because he didn’t cry at his mother’s funeral? Salamano’s dog was worth just as much as his wife.

As if that blind rage had washed me clean, rid me of hope; for the first time, in that night alive with signs and stars, I opened myself to the gentle indifference of the world.

Jun 30, 2017

"I would have liked to have tried explaining to him cordially, almost affectionately, that I had never been able to truly feel remorse for anything."

Jun 30, 2017

"Then he asked me if I wasn't interested in a change of life. I said that people never change their lives, that in any case one life was as good as another and that I wasn't dissatisfied with mine here at all."

SPL_STARR Jun 16, 2015

"Mother died today. Or, maybe, yesterday; I can't be sure."


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Bluebird1298 May 07, 2012

Bluebird1298 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


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