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The Picture of Dorian Gray
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Past Reads > The Picture of Dorian Grey

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message 1: by Jonathan, A dream within a dream (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan Terrington (thewritestuff) | 387 comments Mod
The Picture of Dorian Grey is our 1001 books monthly read. Enjoy!


message 2: by Bev (new) - rated it 3 stars

Bev (greenginger) | 296 comments Hi I read this years ago and seemed to recall enjoying it. I guess I will give it a re read sometime this month and see if my older self still likes it.


Sunny (travellingsunny) So, so excited! I have always wanted to read this story, but I just never seemed to get around to it. I don't even know what his deal is - but I got an inkling of it when I watched a movie called "The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen."


Lauren (youratlass) | 62 comments Mod
I just started this book and cannot bear the thought of putting it down. I am finding myself reading at a snail's pace to make it last longer.


Sunny (travellingsunny) Lauren wrote: "I just started this book and cannot bear the thought of putting it down. I am finding myself reading at a snail's pace to make it last longer."

OK. Inquiring minds want to know. Have you finished it yet? Is it REALLY that good? I haven't started yet; I want to finish Jane Eyre first, which I'm reading with another group. But, I'm hoping to start with Dorian next week.


message 6: by Jonathan, A dream within a dream (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan Terrington (thewritestuff) | 387 comments Mod
It's really very good. I gave it five stars Sunny I can't remember what I like about it in particular...
http://www.goodreads.com/review/show/...
Oh that's what I liked about it: pretty much everything.


Sunny (travellingsunny) My eyes! MY EYES! NO SPOILERS, JONATHAN, YOU EVIL, EVIL, GENIUS!


message 8: by Jonathan, A dream within a dream (last edited Jun 06, 2012 05:33AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan Terrington (thewritestuff) | 387 comments Mod
Yeah I definitely am that hehehe. Oh yeah and SPOILERS...

Oh look I now have pretty tags covering up the nasty spoilers.


Sunny (travellingsunny) :)


Nathan | 8 comments Hey all,

I'm roughly a quarter of the way through this, and am loving Wilde's description of Gray's beauty and vulnerability. And, although I'm not a woman, or a man with gay tendencies, I find myself falling in love with him...


Lauren (youratlass) | 62 comments Mod
Sunny in Wonderland wrote: "OK. Inquiring minds want to know. Have you finished it yet? Is it REALLY that good? I haven't started yet; I want to finish Jane Eyre first, which I'm reading with another group. But, I'm hoping to start with Dorian next week. "

I haven't finished it. I am reading another book at the same time and am trying to finish it first. I'll let you know what I think once I finish it.

PS I LOVE Jane Eyre!


Sunny (travellingsunny) Lauren wrote: "Sunny in Wonderland wrote: "OK. Inquiring minds want to know. Have you finished it yet? Is it REALLY that good? I haven't started yet; I want to finish Jane Eyre first, which I'm reading with anoth..."

So, so many people absolutely RAVE about Jane Eyre. I can't say that I love it yet... but, I only just got to the part where she skipped ahead to age 18 and is preparing to leave the school. I'm told that it starts to get much better at this point.


Lauren (youratlass) | 62 comments Mod
Sunny in Wonderland wrote: "Lauren wrote: "Sunny in Wonderland wrote: "OK. Inquiring minds want to know. Have you finished it yet? Is it REALLY that good? I haven't started yet; I want to finish Jane Eyre first, which I'm rea..."

It gets so much better. I had a very good friend that I have similar reading tastes to tell me again and again to read Jane Eyre and I could NEVER get into it. So I ended up getting the book on tape and listening to it when I worked in outside sales and was in the car for 6+ hours a day. Once I knew the story I couldn't help but re-read it again and again. So it does get better, I promise!


Lauren (youratlass) | 62 comments Mod
I just finished Dorian Gray and while I found it disturbing and at times hard to continue, I am really glad I read it.

Did anyone else feel like Oscar Wilde was hitting you over the head with foreshadowing?


Sunny (travellingsunny) I've still not started on this book, because I'm working on Jane Eyre for another group. But, what do you mean "at times hard to continue?" Hard because the content was too disturbing, or was it because of something else?


Nathan | 8 comments Subtlety was not a hallmark of Victorians. :)


Lauren (youratlass) | 62 comments Mod
It just dragged some things out. I personally found the beginning leading up to Dorian's sins very interesting, then there were interesting parts mixed in and then the end was perfect.

And Nathan I realize that but a little subtlety would have gone a long way!


Laurel I'm about halfway through this, really enjoying it, although the chapter I have just finished seems t be a bit of a filling-in chapter so I got a bit bored with that. am pretty sure it will pick up again though, I really like Wilde's writing


Nathan | 8 comments I just finished this afternoon. Wilde's style, while verbose and philosophically drawn out at times, is extremely engaging, especially in during the last 1/3 of the novel. I won't give spoilers away here, but on the whole, I really enjoyed it.


message 20: by Liz (new) - rated it 4 stars

Liz Hunt This was an amazing read. I read this a while ago and loved wildes writing. Very descriptive! I felt quite distraught at his behaviour and even when I knew what would happen at the end of the story I felt a huge sense of shock and relief when it happened. I have read and reread this book several times and will do so again


message 21: by Dani (new) - added it

Dani I just found the Kindle edition as a free download on Amazon (love how classics are often free) I am trying to get myself to enjoy classics and have heard a lot of positives about this one. Can't wait to start discussion!


Sunny (travellingsunny) Well, after 40+ pages of introductions, quotes, and explanations of Oscar Wilde's life, (I didn't know he was a homosexual, and wonder what on earth that information has to do with reading this book?!?) I am FINALLY up to the actual story.


Nathan | 8 comments I just skipped all that. I'm trying to get away from reading introductions about certain classics and their authors. I find that the extra information sets up a prejudicial bias in my reading of the text. That being said, as someone who took classes in lit. theory in college, I thoroughly enjoy reading criticism after reading a novel or play, etc.


message 24: by Dani (new) - added it

Dani I am not a classics reader at all. I wish I could enjoy them. It was a free download on my Kindle and I just started it. Been trying to figure out exactly what is going on. If anyone can give a really concise explanation of what I should be focusing on with regards to themes and the like I may be able to enjoy it more. As of now I am just a little confused as to what is exactly going on. Like I said, not a classics reader much but trying to get myself into reading "famous" works.


Sunny (travellingsunny) Nathan wrote: "I just skipped all that. I'm trying to get away from reading introductions about certain classics and their authors. I find that the extra information sets up a prejudicial bias in my reading of th..."

Most of the time, I follow your philosophy. Even for contemporary pieces, I don't read anyone's reviews until after I've read a novel and written my own. But, I've heard about the infamous Dorian Gray for so long, and never really knew what the story was about.

I've just finished chapter 4, and you may have a point about the information setting up a bias. For the first 3 chapters, I kept noticing homosexual behaviors - probably based solely on what I'd read about Wilde.

Now, chapter 4 --- I think I don't care for Lord Henry. He reminds me of the devil's character in a Keanu Reeves movie called Devil's Advocate where the devil kept tempting a potential protege. It's almost like he's TRYING to corrupt young Dorian...


Nathan | 8 comments I totally agree about Lord Henry! It's like he has this Svengali like thing goimg on with Dorian.


message 27: by Sunny (last edited Jun 14, 2012 12:04PM) (new) - rated it 3 stars

Sunny (travellingsunny) Well, I've just finished chapter 8. I'm not sure that I understand (view spoiler). I really hope the book elaborates later.

Now, that Lord Henry. Oh! I just want to smack him. I still think he's the devil incarnate - especially after he (view spoiler). But, moreover, Wilde has made him out to be a complete woman HATER. Everytime he says stuff like "We have emancipated them, but they remain slaves looking for their masters, all the same." I just want to cringe...

UPDATE: Just finished chapter 10. And, I find it interesting that Dorian is beginning to exhibit signs of acute paranoia. (view spoiler) And STILL... that damnable Lord Henry. (view spoiler)


message 28: by Jonathan, A dream within a dream (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan Terrington (thewritestuff) | 387 comments Mod
Lord Henry is one of the most unlikeable characters in fiction in my view. The things he does...

(view spoiler)


message 29: by Dani (new) - added it

Dani I keep trying to read this and figure out what is going on. I am about 2 chapters in on my Kindle (so reading pretty fast trying to finish today) I am at the part where he is being painted and talks about how after youth the beauty fades. Can someone please help me figure out exactly what is going on? I have a hard time unnderstanding classics because of the writing style and all the characters to keep track of. The many characters and also the tone of the story is detracting from my overall enjoyment. So far, 1 star.


Mimicha | 15 comments So I have finished this book and really enjoyed it. I found some really beautiful quotes. The story was interesting. There were topics that were masterfully explored through the character's dialogue. I felt more than anything it gave a good oversight of the period and dandyism. I didn't feel super connected to the book even though I knew I enjoyed it throughout, until I got home and realized I was going to get to read it tonight.


Mimicha | 15 comments I'm excited about doing some research on Wilde and the book to further my understanding of some of the philosophical topics that he wrote about it. I also must say that as a woman I found myself time and time again offended about how little he valued the female sex.


message 32: by Jonathan, A dream within a dream (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jonathan Terrington (thewritestuff) | 387 comments Mod
Mimicha wrote: "I'm excited about doing some research on Wilde and the book to further my understanding of some of the philosophical topics that he wrote about it. I also must say that as a woman I found myself ti..."

I don't think it was that he did not value them. It's more that his work was a social commentary. As such it was aimed at pointing out how his society little valued them. Read The Importance of Being Earnest and you'll see how he creates a caricature of propriety and manners using two independent women. There is also A Woman of No Importance and An Ideal Husband which he does similar social critiques. From my understanding across his works it appears he valued women but that his characters do not. Many of his feminine characters are very strong and independent and are used to draw attention to the ludicrous of the society he lived in. Wilde was more against propriety and bondage. Particularly he tried to show up the morality system as hypocrisy. I often wonder if a lot of his reasons for showing society in such a light is due to his homosexuality in that society.


Mimicha | 15 comments Thank you for your insight Jonathon. That makes sense!


message 34: by Chris (new)

Chris Rakunas | 2 comments Finished this book and loved it! I think both the plot of it and the dialogue are quite interesting. I didn't think it was a difficult read, and I enjoyed how easily the story flowed.


message 35: by Dani (new) - added it

Dani I am still working on this but it has gotten better. Still not a favorite but I am glad I gave it a try as a person who doesn't typically enjoy many classics. The language is something that I have to get used to but other than that the concept is good.


Maggie the Muskoka Library Mouse (mcurry1990) Not my cup of tea. The character of Dorian really bugged me.


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