Having finished the Introduction, this book looks promising: We got a little bit of a glimpse of Sartre and de Beauvoir already and had a very brief run-down of what we mean by "Existentialism" ... now it is on to the actual background of ideas.
From what I can tell, this book has all the makings of a philosophical equivalent to Czerski's book on physics (Storm in a Teacup), by which I mean to say - I'm enjoying the writing and the proposed structure of the book immensely so far.
I may also need to come up with a separate reading list of book I want to explore further on the subject - starting with re-reads of Sartre's Being and Nothingness and de Beauvoir's The Second Sex. It's been a long while since I've read them.
And more Camus, of course. It might be a good time to dust off my copies of The Rebel (which I remember being quite fond of) and The Plague (which I am half-discussing with a RL friend at the moment anyway - he's reading it with his French Studies book group). Especially, since Sartre's reaction to The Rebel and the subsequent fall-out between him and Camus may come up in Bakewell's book.
Oh, man, I can already see how this book is going to be one long trip down various rabbit holes...