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The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Works (Halcyon Classics)

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The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Short Stories is a compilation of short stories by Oscar Wilde, along with his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. It was originally published in 1888 under the title Stories: Oscar Wilde. Some of the short stories within include "The Sphinx Without a Secret," "The Model Millionaire," and stories from the previously-published collec The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Short Stories is a compilation of short stories by Oscar Wilde, along with his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. It was originally published in 1888 under the title Stories: Oscar Wilde. Some of the short stories within include "The Sphinx Without a Secret," "The Model Millionaire," and stories from the previously-published collections "A House of Pomegranates" and "The Happy Prince and Other Tales." This book is sure to interest Oscar Wilde fans and fans of Victorian literature. OSCAR WILDE (1854-1900) was a celebrated Irish-born playwright, short story writer, poet, and personality in Victorian London. He is best known for his involvement in the aesthetic movement and his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as his many plays, such as Lady Windermere's Fan, The Importance of Being Ernest, A Woman of No Importance, An Ideal Husband, and Salom . During his imprisonment for gross indecency, he wrote De Profundis, and later, The Ballad of Reading Gao.


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The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Short Stories is a compilation of short stories by Oscar Wilde, along with his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. It was originally published in 1888 under the title Stories: Oscar Wilde. Some of the short stories within include "The Sphinx Without a Secret," "The Model Millionaire," and stories from the previously-published collec The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Short Stories is a compilation of short stories by Oscar Wilde, along with his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray. It was originally published in 1888 under the title Stories: Oscar Wilde. Some of the short stories within include "The Sphinx Without a Secret," "The Model Millionaire," and stories from the previously-published collections "A House of Pomegranates" and "The Happy Prince and Other Tales." This book is sure to interest Oscar Wilde fans and fans of Victorian literature. OSCAR WILDE (1854-1900) was a celebrated Irish-born playwright, short story writer, poet, and personality in Victorian London. He is best known for his involvement in the aesthetic movement and his only novel, The Picture of Dorian Gray, as well as his many plays, such as Lady Windermere's Fan, The Importance of Being Ernest, A Woman of No Importance, An Ideal Husband, and Salom . During his imprisonment for gross indecency, he wrote De Profundis, and later, The Ballad of Reading Gao.

30 review for The Picture of Dorian Gray and Other Works (Halcyon Classics)

  1. 4 out of 5

    Sizzleb

    How have I never read this book until now? Beautifully written, thought-provoking look at the life of a young man who has it all...but pays a great price for it. 4.5 stars because a couple of times Wilde gets bogged down in relaying minute details that add little or nothing to the story itself, but I extremely enjoyed 99% of this book, especially the characters' witty banter. And I appreciate that the author didn't shy away from the only appropriate ending. As Wilde, aka Lord Henry quotes "What How have I never read this book until now? Beautifully written, thought-provoking look at the life of a young man who has it all...but pays a great price for it. 4.5 stars because a couple of times Wilde gets bogged down in relaying minute details that add little or nothing to the story itself, but I extremely enjoyed 99% of this book, especially the characters' witty banter. And I appreciate that the author didn't shy away from the only appropriate ending. As Wilde, aka Lord Henry quotes "What does it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose'—how does the quotation run?—'his own soul'?”

  2. 5 out of 5

    Emily

    This books tells the story of Dorian Grey a handsome and rich young man who at the beginning of the book has his portrait painted by Basil Hallward, a local artist. After meeting Lord Henry and consequently becoming considerably more vain, Dorian pronounces a wish that the portrait would be the one to age while he himself stayed always young and handsome. The rest of the story relates the slow and total corruption of his character through terrible acts. And as he wished it, Dorian Grey finishes This books tells the story of Dorian Grey a handsome and rich young man who at the beginning of the book has his portrait painted by Basil Hallward, a local artist. After meeting Lord Henry and consequently becoming considerably more vain, Dorian pronounces a wish that the portrait would be the one to age while he himself stayed always young and handsome. The rest of the story relates the slow and total corruption of his character through terrible acts. And as he wished it, Dorian Grey finishes the book as a young, handsome but very corrupt man. Not having changed outwardly, but having a daily reminder of his black soul. The book was not my favorite, I found the particulars of this book rather disturbing as I read it... But I do think that the idea behind the book is very interesting and I have found myself thinking about it quite a bit. If you had a painting to absorb the consequences of every wrong action you took, would you be a better person? Would the painting of your conscience be enough to make you think twice? Although the idea is purely fictional, this book has made me wonder what my painting would look like and what I could do to make it better. That is worth something.

  3. 5 out of 5

    Haarika

    I'm not a great writer. Definitely not worthy of writing a review on Oscar Wilde. His stories are not only entertaining but also flamboyant, intelligent and has underlying theme which makes it memorable.I simply love him.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Feriel Mejri

    "Everything's possible for you because you have the only two things worth having: Youth and beauty " a life lesson for those who thinks that they are superior to other just because they are pretty/handsome.... i loved the book ^^

  5. 4 out of 5

    Kavita

    With a fitting end, the pages of description of art, thoughts ranging from Basil's innocent ones to Harry's cynic ones saw Dorian as a character growing from what he had not known to which he couldn't ignore anymore.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Luke Burchell

    I liked this one well enough. It seemed kinda pretentious at times. I thought the ending was really nice. The short stories at the end were cute. Decent work

  7. 4 out of 5

    Jen

    A little bit slow in the last 3/4 with all the things Dorian studies, but overall brilliant.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Melissa

    I love a book that has reason to give me pause, and this book was exactly that. Some quotables: 1. There is a fatality about all physical and intellectual distinction...it is better not to be different from one's fellows. The ugly and the stupid have the best of it in the world. They can sit at their ease and gape at the play. If they know nothing of victory, they are at least spared the knowledge of defeat. 2. The commonest thing is delightful if only one hides it. 3. Every portrait that is painte I love a book that has reason to give me pause, and this book was exactly that. Some quotables: 1. There is a fatality about all physical and intellectual distinction...it is better not to be different from one's fellows. The ugly and the stupid have the best of it in the world. They can sit at their ease and gape at the play. If they know nothing of victory, they are at least spared the knowledge of defeat. 2. The commonest thing is delightful if only one hides it. 3. Every portrait that is painted with feeling is a portrait of the artist, not of the sitter. 4. You like every one; that is to say, you are indifferent to every one. 5. Those who are faithful know only the trivial side of love; it is the faithless who know love's tragedies. 6. Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul 7. It is only shallow people who do not judge by appearances. The true mystery of the world is the visible, not the invisible... 8. She behaves as if she were beautiful. Most American women do. It is the secret of their charm. 9. Behind every exquisite thing that existed, there was something tragic. 10. To get back one's youth, one has merely to repeat one's follies. 11. The only thing one never regrets are one's mistakes 12. People are very fond of giving away what they need most themselves. It is what I call the depth of generosity. 13. He lives the poetry that he cannot write. The others write the poetry that they dare not realize. 14. That book of cowardice whose author apes the name common sense. 15. Children begin by loving their parents; as they grow older they judge them; sometimes they forgive them. 16. To be good is to be in harmony with one's self. 17. A cigarette is the perfect type of a perfect pleasure. It is exquisite, and it leaves one unsatisfied. 18. That awful memory of a woman! What a fearful thing it is! 19. When a woman marries again, it is because she detested her first husband. When a man marries again, it is because he adored his first wife. Women try their luck; men risk theirs. 20. I like men who have a future and women who have a past. 21. She is very clever, too clever for a woman. She lacks the indefinable charm of weakness. 22. Every effect that one produces gives one an enemy. To be popular, one must be a mediocrity. 23. We women, as some one says, love with our ears, just as you men love with your eyes, if you ever love at all.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Karen

    I struggled to get into this at first, but there were some surprising twists and turns which captivated me. This was balanced by the long descriptions and musing which belong to an older world, which I must admit I occasionally skipped over. For example when Dorian develops an interest in art, tapestry etc, I found the detail too much for me. Throughout the book, the descriptive language is incredible. I loved some of it, more often than not brief examples shouted out to me and I sat back and tho I struggled to get into this at first, but there were some surprising twists and turns which captivated me. This was balanced by the long descriptions and musing which belong to an older world, which I must admit I occasionally skipped over. For example when Dorian develops an interest in art, tapestry etc, I found the detail too much for me. Throughout the book, the descriptive language is incredible. I loved some of it, more often than not brief examples shouted out to me and I sat back and thought, what a brilliant writer. A wonderful example of this: 'She was a curious woman, whose dresses always looked as it they had been designed in a rage and put on in tempest'. Not only is this superb description, but it also made me think of how much I would have disliked having to dress like women did in those days. It stirred feelings as well as gave me a real sense of how she was dressed. Superb! The development of Dorian Gray's character is brilliant 'He grew more and more enamoured of his own beauty, more and more interested in the corruption of his own soul'. Page 124. Oscar Wilde immerses us in the culture of world at that time 'Civilization is not by any means an easy thing to attain...there are only two ways by which man can reach it. One is by being cultured, the other is by being corrupt'. P 200. Wonderful observations like this make this novel so good and set in a time gone by. The copy I read had notes, which I often find a distraction. I didn't look all of them up, but occasionally did so. Often there was a note about when the line was added and who added it, the editor or Oscar Wilde. I found this fascinating. To think of the power of the editor! One note pointed out how Oscar Wilde had greatly embellished the point at which Dorian recognised something strange about the picture and did this in 1891. In my book the notes and introduction were completed by Robert Mighall. I found these interesting and was able to skip them or gain more information when I wanted to. Brilliant end to the story! I wasn't sure what I would make of this novel and read it for our reading group. I am so pleased I did. It will possibly make me read more by Oscar Wilde.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    This is not my kind of book. It is the story of the corruption of a young man just to see if it can be done. Definitely a Victorian story it comes off to me as very preachy with the moral redemption of the story coming at the end of a downward spiral. I started it on my own at the beginning of summer break and laid it aside after about half of it. It was required reading for an English class the next semester so I had to finish it. The corruption was complete and the redemption sacrificial. Dori This is not my kind of book. It is the story of the corruption of a young man just to see if it can be done. Definitely a Victorian story it comes off to me as very preachy with the moral redemption of the story coming at the end of a downward spiral. I started it on my own at the beginning of summer break and laid it aside after about half of it. It was required reading for an English class the next semester so I had to finish it. The corruption was complete and the redemption sacrificial. Dorian Gray, an extremely naive good looking young man, sits for a portrait at the request of his new friend Basil Howard. In the process of painting Dorian Basil falls in 'love' with Dorian's naive, innocent good looks. Basil wants to keep him always the same as an inspiration to art. But Lord Henry, third in the triangle, finds it much more interesting to tempt Dorian with all the pleasures of the senses that life offers just to see how far Dorian will go and how much it will change him. Doran is fascinated with the temptations. Once Basil's portrait is finished and Dorian actually sees his reflection in it he is amazed at his own beauty and immmediately regrets that he will one day grow old and lose his beauty. At that moment he makes a fervant wish that his portrait would grow old and he himself would enjoy youth and good looks forever. It is not until his first major fall into Lord Henry's offered temptations that he realizes his wish has come true. From that moment on he spends his life satisfying all of the lusts and temptations of the senses that life can offer, all the while seeing the effects on the face of his portrait and not in his mirror. Good looks and youth open many doors to the world for him. 'No consequences" changes Dorian Gray's spirit and soul as the reader watches him spiral downward - until he hits bottom.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    I'm irritated with this book because it strikes too close to home. I despise Lord Henry and particularly his views on women. I also despise his corrupting influence. I can't help seeing his character as a sort of drug dealer with the drug being hedonism. He is no different from any preacher, though, whose adept use of words and their delivery convinces those who listen that he speaks truth. Something that has a hint of truth is a potent weapon for deception. As for the value of this novel, it obv I'm irritated with this book because it strikes too close to home. I despise Lord Henry and particularly his views on women. I also despise his corrupting influence. I can't help seeing his character as a sort of drug dealer with the drug being hedonism. He is no different from any preacher, though, whose adept use of words and their delivery convinces those who listen that he speaks truth. Something that has a hint of truth is a potent weapon for deception. As for the value of this novel, it obviously doesn't need my approval. Even though the psychological observations embodied in this novel disturbed me, the clarity of those observations is remarkable. Despite Lord Henry being a bit preachy as a character, that such a short novel could dismember and expose the human soul like a deft surgeon without being pedantic speaks to Wilde's skill as an author.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Helena Magalhães

    This was the first book I ever read on my Kindle for Blackberry app. It enabled me to read it during class because it’s super discreet. I think it’s an easy read, with a couple of chapters being a little “heavier” than some others. Still it captivated me and I couldn’t put it down. It’s the kind of book that discusses life and the many different ways to live it, and gets you thinking about them. And it’s a highly quotable book! I refrained from taking notes from it because I’d probably end up cop This was the first book I ever read on my Kindle for Blackberry app. It enabled me to read it during class because it’s super discreet. I think it’s an easy read, with a couple of chapters being a little “heavier” than some others. Still it captivated me and I couldn’t put it down. It’s the kind of book that discusses life and the many different ways to live it, and gets you thinking about them. And it’s a highly quotable book! I refrained from taking notes from it because I’d probably end up copying the whole book. I just kept thinking “that’s so true!”. In the end I think it’s morale is still to seize the day while you’re young, and not spoil your youth in the opium dens. Or something of the sort.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Jenny

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I got most of what was going on in this book. He implied a lot of things that I think would have made sense to someone who was from the same time period as Oscar was, but since I'm not, I kinda missed some of the details. It wasn't enough to really make the book confusing or anything. Also, I wanted to slap Dorian. Get your own personality/life. Don't just react to what Lord Henry has to say. Lord Henry likes to screw with people and you ruined your whole life because you took him seriously. Als I got most of what was going on in this book. He implied a lot of things that I think would have made sense to someone who was from the same time period as Oscar was, but since I'm not, I kinda missed some of the details. It wasn't enough to really make the book confusing or anything. Also, I wanted to slap Dorian. Get your own personality/life. Don't just react to what Lord Henry has to say. Lord Henry likes to screw with people and you ruined your whole life because you took him seriously. Also, when you are inexplicably liked to painting and you don't know how it works, don't screw with it.

  14. 4 out of 5

    Richard

    Here is the thing about "Picture of Dorian Grey" - Mr. WIlde has written an idea and tried to make it a Novel. There is a bit of suspense in the second half of the book, but the vast majority of the book's 229 pages are two characters - Dorian and Lord Harry - sitting back and discussing the virtues of beauty and art...though I've been there (takes me back to the onsens of Japan), it is tedious listening to others do it. And because one realized that they are, quite definitively wrong, one has n Here is the thing about "Picture of Dorian Grey" - Mr. WIlde has written an idea and tried to make it a Novel. There is a bit of suspense in the second half of the book, but the vast majority of the book's 229 pages are two characters - Dorian and Lord Harry - sitting back and discussing the virtues of beauty and art...though I've been there (takes me back to the onsens of Japan), it is tedious listening to others do it. And because one realized that they are, quite definitively wrong, one has no desire to take quotes from their highly quotable chats and post them as Facebook update. So...Good idea - fun gimmick - not the greatest book.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Paula Mccallum

    CONTAINS SPOILERS***Such as sad tale of temptation, sin, depravity, hedonism, self-absorption, good vs evil... I absolutely detest the character of Lord Henry, the devil incarnate & puppet master, who thoroughly enjoyed his hypnotic toying with Dorian &, thereby others, throughout the story. So many times I wanted to leap into the pages & shake Dorian while he was going under Harry's spell. But, look what it got poor Basil. Too little, too late. Basil knew of the danger, but he didn't, perhaps c CONTAINS SPOILERS***Such as sad tale of temptation, sin, depravity, hedonism, self-absorption, good vs evil... I absolutely detest the character of Lord Henry, the devil incarnate & puppet master, who thoroughly enjoyed his hypnotic toying with Dorian &, thereby others, throughout the story. So many times I wanted to leap into the pages & shake Dorian while he was going under Harry's spell. But, look what it got poor Basil. Too little, too late. Basil knew of the danger, but he didn't, perhaps couldn't stop Harry either. Although hideous, perhaps "good" may have won, but at such sacrifice. A tragic story.

  16. 4 out of 5

    Wayv

    I love Wilde's style! His is a unique, yet accessible perspective of a world forgotten, daring and beautiful. I delighted in his plays and essays - years after I read his novel I felt I wanted to hear so much more from him - he felt like a lost friend, almost. Truly remarkable, in person and art, I only wish I knew more people that not only adore him but are also in some small way akin to his persona.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Scott Kirkland

    The best attack against this book is that I had not read this when I was younger. Perhaps, if I had a painting, I might have had more time in my youth to reflect upon such works. Now, there is no time, and merely calm reflection upon it. I hope to review this work again, if not actually read it again in my future years to come. A truly appreciable pondering. Do I like it? Was it worth all that? Did it change me? Could it have changed me if I had read it earlier? Am I vain? Am I talked about?

  18. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    Man, except for the one chapter that was all detailed on different fads Dorian Gray was into, this was a great read! Its different from movies I've seen that have that character in them. And btw, I'm pretty sure Dorian was a blonde. Most pictures show him as a darker creature... but he's to be more boyish.

  19. 5 out of 5

    Concetta Phillipps

    Not my favorite of Oscar Wilde's, but an excellent story. I recently reread this after listening to the BBC's adaptation on Radio 4. Scary, passionate, and beautifully descriptive, you go from hating Dorian Gray to just feeling sorry for him as his soul becomes more and more tortured by the acts of murder he feels forced to commit.

  20. 4 out of 5

    Claire Blind Reader

    Oscar Wilde is an amazing writer, his style is just kind of, flamboyant. And by flamboyant, I mean flamingly gay. I don't know if all English guys act male oriented but Mr. Wilde really made it seem that way. Good story about the paranormal but really really weird.

  21. 5 out of 5

    Becky

    You absolutely must read this book! It is absolutely engrossing; the writing is beautiful, as you might expect. Wilde's exploration of beauty, the soul, morality and society makes you think; isn't that wonderful?

  22. 5 out of 5

    Megan Mcintyre

    I really loved this book. The ending is outstanding, and a fascinating look and the human nature and how we understand sin, and passion and how a man is destroyed by a book. The only reason I didn't give it 5 stars is that there is that it really drags for a chapter in the middle.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Megara

    Oscar Wilde... He had a knack for creating real-life novels with fiction artfully weaved into it. The Picture of Dorian Grey was an interesting novel and even though I feel the ending was predictable, the passage to its tragic conclusion was quite satisfactory.

  24. 4 out of 5

    Mayde

    I loved and hated this book. I always know it's a good book when I can hate one of the characters so powerfully. The teen group I monitor read this. It lead to some great thoughts and conversations about free agency, peer pressure and why we do what we do.

  25. 4 out of 5

    John

    Great read. Skipped it's historical relevance, and so was able to enjoy it first hand. After the last chapter found it interesting to find out how it not only led to D. Grey's tragic end, but maybe even to that of O. Wilde, as well...

  26. 5 out of 5

    Vin

    It has been a while since I read this book. I remember the way it was written was elegant but at some point it was a little too wordy almost like Oscar Wilde just like to hear himself talk

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tina Siegel

    Dorian Grey is a truly creepy, sad story. Nobody commands language like Wilde did - a master.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Yudi

    Wayyyyy ahead of its time...Brilliant.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Galaxyparadise

    Best ever. Brilliant. Witty and beautiful. Masterpiece.

  30. 5 out of 5

    Emily L.

    I love this story. It's so intense, creative, and absolutely imaginitive. A dark, and romantic classic.

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