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Sunday, June 10, 2007

1001 Book Challenge - The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

A handsome young man, about to inherit wealth and is a darling of society, has his portrait painted. The likeness to its subject is uncanny, and in a careless moment, Gray exchanges his soul so that he may always look like his painting. He gets his wish; and as the portrait turns ugly, reflecting the evil and vain changes in his character, it will lead to desperate acts to hide this terrible secret.

Wilde is perhaps most well-known for his wit and scathingly honest observations on society, and these are present in Dorian Gray (“Philanthropic people lose all sense of humanity. It is their distinguishing characteristic”), but with an additional undercurrent of reflection and seriousness. The hedonists, led by the wickedly charming Lord Henry Wotton, are tempered by the presence of good-hearted, caring characters. Their interplay makes Dorian Gray a much more ‘moral’ book than what might first appear, making it a triumph of style and accomplishment.


Comments on "1001 Book Challenge - The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde"


Blogger Jean-Luc Picard said ... (9:13 pm) : 

This was a superb book that I enjoyed. The Hurd Hatfield/George Sanders film was a fine reflection of it.


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