Friday, December 31, 2010

The Picture of Dorian Gray

So, my current {Current Read} was The Picture of Dorian Gray and it was amazing! Seriously, such a good book.  I'm not gonna lie, there were times it was a little hard for me to get through, but it was so worth it.

The gist of the story is this:  A painter, Basil, finds a boy, Dorian Gray, who is the epitamy of youth.  He is innocent, moldable, and very naive to worldly things.  You can see all this just by looking at him, and has a beauty that  can't be denied.  The painter becomes infatuated with him and paints a portrait of him.

Basil has a friend named Lord Henry who's purpose for living life is pleasure.  He has no regard for consequence or morals. If he likes it and it brings pleasure, he does it.  He fills Dorian's head with ideas of what beauty and pleasure is, and Dorian begins to take this views as his own.

After Basil had finished painting the portrait of Dorian, Lord Henry makes a comment about how Dorian will never look that good again.  That the portrait will forever stay young and beautiful and Dorian will just grow old.  Jokingly, Dorian wishes that the portrait will bear his age.

Dorian finds a young actress girl who he falls in love with.  He sees her one night performing and becomes infatuated with her and falls in "love."  After many times of seeing her perform, he proposes to her.  He brings Basil and Lord Henry to see her perform, and on that night she performs terribly on purpose.  Dorian is ashamed and embarrassed by her act and goes backstage and breaks it off.  He is cruel and mean to her, and later when he gets home, he notices the portrait of him has changed.  He no longer has the innocent look of boyhood, but he has a slightly evil look on his face.  The next day he finds out that the girl has committed suicide.

Dorian lives his life seeking pleasure and entertainment.  Years pass, and the portrait continues to bear his weight of age and sin while he remains looking young.

And then . . .

You'll just have to read it to find out :)

It has a freakin' amazing ending, and I really want to tell you it, but if you want to know how it ends (which is really good ) you should read it.  There are a lot of really interesting ideas to think about and a lot of amazing quotes.  Here are some quotes from the book.  A lot of them make more sense in the context of the book, but still good:

"None of us can stand other people having the same faults as ourselves."

"Each class would have preached the importance of those virtues, for whose exercise there was no necessity in their own lives."

"To get back one's youth one has merely to repeat one's follies."

"The only things one never regrets are one's mistakes."

"To be in love is to surpass one's self."

"The reason we all like to think so well of others is that we are all afraid for ourselves.  The basis of optimism is sheer terror."

"When we blame ourselves we feel that no one else has a right to blame us.  It is the confession, not the priest, that gives us absolution."

"I am not sorry for anything that has happened.  It has taught me to know myself better."

"Sin is a thing that writes itself across a man's face.  It cannot be concealed.  People talk sometimes of secret vices.  There are no such things."

"One has a right to judge of a man by the effect he has over his friends."

"The books that the world calls immoral are books that show the world it's own shame."

"She knew nothing, but she had everything that he had lost."

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