Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Review: The Picture of Dorian Gray

The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde Amazon|Goodreads

Published by Penguin Classics Deluxe Reprinted November 30, 2010 (Originally published 1890)

224 Pages

Stand Alone Novel

Source: Library

Bookologist Analysis: The Picture of Dorian Gray is dramatic, it’s a wonder to behold. There’s a sense of when I was reading it I felt that I knew something deeper was going to happen at the end, but I wasn’t sure what would happen. This book tries to play tricks with my perceptions of the characters, yet each character has a different light each time I look.

Wilde's masterful and wonderfully entertaining exploration of art and morality, in a chic new deluxe edition Enthralled by his own exquisite portrait, Dorian Gray exchanges his soul for eternal youth and beauty. Influenced by his friend Lord Henry Wotton, he is drawn into a corrupt double life; indulging his desires in secret while remaining a gentleman inthe eyes of polite society. Only his portrait bears the traces of his decadence. The novel was a succès de scandale and the book was later used as evidence against Wilde at the Old Bailey in 1895. It has lost none of its power to fascinate and disturb.

The Picture of Dorian Gray is a masterful piece of work that Oscar Wilde must have written to have me confused and yearning for a deeper understanding. It is meant to be a philosophical piece pushing at the edge of my mind, trying to point me in some direction regarding pleasure and beauty— after all which matters most in life?

Dorian Gray is a marvelous character to observe; his metamorphosis from an innocent naïve boy to a hardened man is extraordinary. I must say it took a little getting used to that I didn’t get to see this change over the years it occurred, but just seeing the before and after was a great literary device of Oscar Wilde. In the first few chapters of the book I didn’t think that I would enjoy the lack of action or great plot twists, but it’s the lengthy conversations of Lord Henry that really got me interested in how life is something to be used at one’s disposal or other’s disposal.

The rhythm to the book is also very perplexing as it doesn’t sound like an ancient bore that goes on for ages like many of the books from the time, rather Oscar Wilde writes with a modern flair. This makes The Picture of Dorian Gray easy to understand, so I didn’t I have to mouth the words as I have to with Shakespeare. In essence this book was a whirlwind of me questioning my out take on life, evaluating what are morals, and enjoying how Oscar Wilde challenged me.


  1. I'm glad you liked The Picture of Dorian Gray! Did you know that Wilde said "Dorian is what I would like to be"? (By the way, hi! it's Abigail from CTY!)

    Abigail @ A Novel Kind of Bliss <-- I decided on a blog name!

    1. Hi, Abigail! I didn't know Wilde said that, but cool fact. It's really cool that you started a book blog and finally decided on a name.

      Amelia @ YA Bookologists

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