Camus, noted for his contribution towards the philosophy of ‘Absurdism’, and one of the youngest recipients of the Nobel Prize of Literature, focuses on themes around destiny, love and the human condition. My interpretation of the essence of adsurdism, for Camus, is the clash between human’s desire for order, purpose and meaning and the struggles and pain one goes through to essentially never get it.
Sounds depressing, I know! But it’s really not. It’s just the tonic – a beautiful reminder that the journey is often just as meaningful as the destination, so to enjoy the ride.
It’s only a short book, and a great introduction to Camus (although The Immoralist is also highly recommended). I am fascinated how a book first published in 1909 can be so meaningful to me.
Set in France (as all my favourite love stories are), Jerome and Alissa fall deeply in love against a hazy backdrop of the Normandy countryside. So emotional is their courtship that Alissa becomes fearful of the effect that their love is having. Perhaps selfishly, she seeks to sabotage the relationship, ultimately sacrificing all that is, or could be, wonderful.
Aesthetics and emotion combine to create a real treat, peppered with gorgeous words and sentiments to bring out the romantic in you.
Like all good products that stand the test of time, consider this book a vintage read and invest in it. It should give you pleasure for years to come.
You can grab your own copy of Strait is the Gate by Albert Camus from Amazon.