The Picture of Dorian Gray- Oscar Wilde

This book was read as part of The Rory List.

Synopsis (from Amazon)

The Picture of Dorian Gray is Oscar Wilde’s enduringly popular story of a beautiful and corrupt man and the portrait that reveals all his secrets.

Entranced by the perfection of his recently painted portrait, the youthful Dorian Gray expresses a wish that the figure on the canvas could age and change in his place. When his wish comes true, the portrait becomes his hideous secret as he follows a downward trajectory of decadence and cruelty that leaves its traces only in the portrait’s degraded image. Wilde’s unforgettable portrayal of a Faustian bargain and its consequences is narrated with his characteristic incisive wit and diamond-sharp prose. The result is a novel that is as flamboyant and controversial as its incomparable author.


This book had been on my kindle waiting to be read for almost a year (I put it on at Christmas when I got my kindle), and had intended to read it long before that- since before I’ve had this blog in fact. It’s one of those books you feel you should read in a sense, a classic, yes, but one you feel may have a bit on a punch to it. Early Sci-fi if you will.

It wasn’t exactly what I expected, even though I didn’t have a great deal of expectations anyway. I did enjoy it generally speaking but I also found it rather slow, it took a while for anything of any real significance to happen, although once it did I started enjoying the story much more.

It had a certain scary element to it. An inevitability, and actually a death in it made The Shortlist’s most gruesome literary deaths (beware spoilers) recently (and I agree, it was horrific!).

I never really liked Dorian himself, even before all the bad things were happening. He was too nieve, and too easily influenced, but that made him rather an interesting character to read. I preferred Lord Henry, he wasn’t exactly a good person but he was certainly an entertaining character.


Buy it:

Kindle (free)

Paperback (£1.99)

Hardback (£5.99)

Other Reviews:

Nylon Admiral

Kristi Loves Books

Did I miss your review? Post your link in comments and I will add it here.


Filed under Classics, Fiction review

10 responses to “The Picture of Dorian Gray- Oscar Wilde

  1. I’ve started this a few times, but haven’t ever got far enough to say it was “good.” I’ll have to give it another go…Thanks for the great review.


  2. This is one I keep meaning to read, but just haven’t gotten to it. I even bought it about two years ago. Now I have to read it, if only to find out the gruesome death…


  3. Isi

    I am in the same situation you were: I downloaded it for free when I got my kindle, but it still is in it… I’m lazy because, after all, everybody knows what the story is about, but I have to try (someday).


  4. It’s worth a try certainly. It’s a relatively easy read (for a classic) and enjoyable so long as you don’t mind not charging into the excitement.


  5. I got annoyed when I read the shortlist article because I thought it would spoil the death, it may have a little (in that I knew it was going to happen) but I still found it rather shocking.


  6. You’re welcome. It is a bit of a slow starter but once it gets going it’s fairly easy to keep reading.


  7. This is on my TBR list for the Classics Challenge. Thanks for your review.


  8. You’re welcome. I hope you enjoy it


  9. Pingback: Review of the Year 2012- Challenges | Lucybird's Book Blog

  10. Pingback: Book Review | ‘The House of Pomegranates’ by Oscar Wilde « Wordly Obsessions

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