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Notebooks 1951-1959 Hardcover – April 2, 2008
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From Publishers Weekly
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This is the intimate record―the only one we have―of the final years of Albert Camus. Years that should have been glorious, leading up to and including his Nobel Prize. But for Camus they were the saddest years. He had lost the ideological battle to his arch-enemy Jean-Paul Sartre, or at least he was meant to feel that he had. He was genuinely ill, acknowledging defeat from illness of a lifetime. Death―his own―is a leitmotiv running through this journal. He would of course die soon after writing these final pages. He died not because of his lungs but when a friend drove their automobile into a tree. Camus would have enjoyed the irony of this, for irony was another of his leitmotivs. Now we can be grateful that Camus put so much of his existence into his notebooks, grateful to his family for allowing them to be published, and to his publishers for giving them to us. (Herbert Lottman)
Ryan Bloom has superbly contextualized his highly readable translation of Camus's last working notebooks. His translator's note, a model of its kind, explains why he lets Camus's French echo through the English. (Marilyn Gaddis-Rose)
Notebooks is a fascinating look into the mind of a man who influenced an entire generation, and a bit of nostalgia for when writers were important participants in the international dialogue on good government. (Foreword Reviews)
Smoothly translated...diaristic, expansive and self revealing...Reinforce[s] Camus' stubborn determination to lead a meaningful life in an indifferent universe. (Publishers Weekly)
Bloom has succeeded masterfully in preserving Camus's thoughts as they appeared in his original cahiers. A highly recommended work offering insight into the thoughts of a great writer. (Library Journal)
Anyone interested in the works of Camus will benefit from this work. (Metapsychology Online Reviews)
From his travels to his observations about life and politics, this concludes a fine expose of Camus' life and thoughts and is a must... (Midwest Book Review)
One of the pleasures of this edition of Albert Camus's late-life notebooks is in skipping around: Certainly, they can read straight through, but the compact philosophical aphorisms sprinkled among the longer passages―which include fascinating drafts of letters to friends―encourage a hopscotcher's approach. (New York Magazine)
Notebooks 1951–1959 comes to us raw... it offers an unmediated look at the author's mind in the final years of a productive but tormented life... this volume is a valuable guide to understanding the author. (San Antonio Current)
[A] fascinating glimpse into a mind tormented by bitterness and dissatisfaction... Anglophone readers can finally appreciate Camus' full scope as man and author. (CHOICE)
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The entries vary. Some go on for several paragraphs, others (most) are short and frequently obscure. Read morePublished on February 27, 2009 by Michael F. Herrmann