The Picture of Dorian Gray

Paula’s NB2 students are welcome to post here their book reviews of this abriged version of Oscar Wilde’s novel. Enjoy!


8 responses to “The Picture of Dorian Gray

  1. I liked the book because it is an intriguing book and easy to read. I also liked it because I learned a lot English expressions.

    In my opinion the best character is Lord Henry because he has a very practical philosophy of life. He lives the moment. We must make the best of each moment. Time passes quickly and you have to enjoy it.

    The work transmits the message of the passing of time, no body gets rid of it, always leaves a mark.
    The book also conveys the idea that if you sell your soul to get what you want, (at its expense) in the end you pay with unhappiness, or worse, as in the case of Dorian Gray, with death.

  2. The portrait of Dorian Gray
    by Oscar Wilde
    Oscar Fingal O’Flahertie Wills Wilde, was born in 16th of October in 1854 in Dublin, Ireland. Oscar was educated at home until he was nine; When he was seventeen, her sister died, and Oscar wrote a delicate poem called Requiescat.
    In 1871, he studied in Trinity College., Due to his excellent work he won “The Gold Berkeley Medal”. When his mother died in 1876 he wrote a new poem “Ravenna”, which made him the “Oxford Newdigate Prize”.
    Oscar wrote “The Picture of Dorian Gray” which was published by Lippincott’s Monthly Magazine on 20th of June in 1890. Later, he revised the novel and added new chapters and this last version was published by Ward, Lock, and Company in April in 1891.
    The novel’s plot is about Dorian’s narcissism, when he see himself in a picture painted by his friend Basil Hallward. Dorian did a contract with the Devil, only the picture would grow old, he would be young forever.
    There is a character, Lord Henry Wotton, who tries to influence the Dorian’s personality throughout the novel, because he has a weak personality and when he realizes is very late.
    For his reason a pretty and young actress dies. , His friend Basil and the actress’ brother and Dorian decide to destroy the picture, but is the picture who destroys Dorian.
    I don’t like the novel, I think that it is very infantile, there is a chapter where Alan Campbell appears suddenly; James Vane died in trivial, his sister died for love; People speak bad about Dorian, however everybody goes to his parties and nobody realizes that Dorian does never grow old . And when everybody accepts it, and Dorian himself, he goes and destroys the picture and died. I think that it is ridiculous.
    Samuel Navas

    Although I knew the story, (I saw the movie many years ago), I liked the book very much. I loved the dialogues of the characters and the irony of the book.
    The characters are very well portrayed:
    – Basil Hallward is the artist. His love for Dorian Gray changed his way to see Art (” He is all my art now”) and he feared that Lord Henry changed Dorian Gray.
    – Lord Henry manipulated Dorian Gray with his ideas. He thought that pleasure and youth are the most important things in the world. When Dorian Gray met Lord Henry, he became a different person and started to think as he did. Afterwards, when Dorian looked at the picture, he remembered Lord Henry’s words and he said: “I wish that I could always stay young and that picture could grow old”. In the end Dorian was not happy and became a bad and evil person.
    -What does the book teach us?
    The book is about eternal youth and I think it teaches us that beauty is in the soul and not in the body.

  4. susana romero

    I think that it´s a interesting history but I don´t like the personality of Dorian and Lord Henry,they are very unkind with other people especially with the poor Sybil Vane.

    Dorian has an expected final because such a person takes a wrong way.
    For me it is good to read in english because I can learn more vocabulary and expressions.

  5. I think it’s a great read.
    His argument is known as selling his soul to the devill to remain forever young.
    The dialogues are full of criticism and talk of women as objects but they grace Lord Henry’s cynicism.
    The book does not bore the reader by describing how the portrait changes.
    Raquel Bachiller

    I think it teaches us that greed blinds us until losing the notion and the most important things are yourself and your soul and not the facade. It is a very interesting history. When I read it, I felt I needed to finish it because I needed to know the end. I recommend to read it!

    The characters:
    DORIAN GRAY – This character is selfish and conceited. He is blind because he always want to stay young. He does not care that a few people died for it. He is a cold person and doesn’t think of Basil’s secret. He only thinks of himself.

    BASIL HALLWARD – The artist created the picture and was very proud of his art.
    This portrait is for him the secret of his hearth. He is a man with feelings, so he did not believe that his best friend Dorian Gray was able to sell his soul in return for eternal youth.

    LORD HENRY – He has an ironic personality and he likes laughing at everybody. He sees the real interest that Dorian Gray has in the portrait and achieves from him his real personality. Lord Henry advises him that youth is not eternal.

    In this novel, Oscar Wilde criticizes narcissism through the main character, Dorian Gray. The book reflects that the goal of human beings is the pursuit of pleasure, beauty and everlasting youth, although this actitude make us worse like person.
    Lord Henry speaks to Dorian about this kind of life that then he does not dare to do.
    I consider that Oscar Wilde criticizes in this work the society in which he lived. I believe in our society today we have not changed much. We are immerse in the pursuit of beauty and youth that is not ours (plastic surgery, for example), and leave aside the important things in live.

    I like the book because it has mystery, thriller, love and deaths. I like reading books with this argument. I understand the book well. The vocabulary is not complicated. I learned new words for me.
    The argument is fine as I said before. I watched the las movie that waas made from this novel and it has differences with the book, but I liked the book and the movie.
    My favorite character is Lord Henry Wotton because he has power to influence and change other characters.
    I think that the author of the novel wanted to teach, that money is not more important than life because you can live with luxuries but if you are not a good person, you have not a full life.

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