Finished Maurice Blanchot's Thomas the Obscure yesterday; it was very well-paced and didn't dwell on some of the literary philosophies it presents. You could call it absurdist by how many times "absurd" appears throughout the book but it really isn't and it's not Beckettian either, although I wouldn't put it past Beckett to have gotten some ideas from Blanchot since Blanchot was an unrecognized reclusive writer and perhaps Beckett thought he could get away with stealing the ideas and no one noticing (I'm just joking; that idea's completely unfounded but the similarities of what I know from Beckett are close). Blanchot's concept of the writer's second death makes a lot of sense if you just let yourself get lost in this text which won't make a ton of sense if you try to apply normal elements of fiction, such as place, time, and sometimes even the characters. It's more philosophical than literary and doesn't try to hide it; the characters talk like they're philosophers, almost like characters in Ingmar Bergman movies (no dis there, I adore Bergman). Wikipedia notes that the "obscure" part of the title alludes to Heraclitus, a Greek philosopher I've only heard a little about but his statement that "all entities come to be in accordance with this Logos" (literally, "word", "reason", or "account") resonates pretty soundly in the book and, it would seem, through Blanchot's entire philosophy.
I hope I haven't given anything away; there isn't much detailed plot so it's hard to give something away. I can't get enough of the writer's second death factor, though. I'm not sure how much it pops up everywhere else (French literature is somewhat new to me) but if in one of Blanchot's pure theoretical texts he outlines this concept less cryptically, why wouldn't every philosophically-minded writer trample over others to get to these ideas.
I don't know how common Blanchot appears to anyone else (a place to shed some light, if you'd like) but I only heard of Blanchot through the Norwegian film Reprise dir. by Jaochim Trier (no relation that I know of the Lars von Trier) even though Blanchot supposedly has an influence on Derrida and clearly has influence on Andre Gide's work. Since I don't know how to post physical stars, I'd give this 4 out of 5 for the lack of realism which is more personal taste than anything else. It gets four stars because it's the best discussion of death I have ever read in my lifetime and yes, it is better than Ingmar Bergman's death discussions.