The reason why I got this book or for that matter I bought the entire collection of Oscar Wilde is such that if I tell you, you will laugh on me big time. Unfortunately I haven’t read nothing from him in the last two decades or more. What I read of him last was for sure in the school course books and never picked up anything after that. How stupid one can be 🙁 and how sad that is. Now, I saw this on Amazon a few months back and the book cover, a huge picture of Oscar Wilde with his wild hair got my attention, I totally love his Hair but now I love his writing slightly more than his hair if you ask me. Of-course, people who have read more of him will not be surprised when I say that his Novel and story is actually so smooth that it feels as I am reading the world’s most perfect poetry. It just made me glide through it, I was feeling as I am travelling in a Gondola in a secluded lake with beautiful surroundings on my way to heaven. And if you have a Low Blood Pressure problem, let me tell you, this book exactly made me feel like my BP was going low as if I was waiting on a huge swing going up and down. For sure, this is my life’s one of the most beautiful book ever which further confused me when I am asked to decided whether I loved the story or the characters or actually the Author. Even after 48 hours of finishing the book, I am not out of its awe and still dreaming of Oscar Wilde, in exactly that attire typing his story on a vintage typewriter. Now and then, he keeps shaking his head to move those curls totally making me love him more and feel jealous. I wish I could keep my crop like that (someday).
I have heard of a term “Poetry in motion” some time back but what it means truly I have learned with this book. As I moved ahead with the story of the most beautiful character of Dorian Gray who is much loved, admired and followed almost by all his friends, neighbors and people of the society he moves around in. The way they love him and the way he does things and especially the way his character is carved out, one just can’t help but fall head over heels in love with the man. At the very start of the story one of his best friends Basil Hallward paints a picture of him and calls it his own masterpiece :). Dorian Gray is so jealous of his own picture (hardly 18 years) that he wishes if he could always remain young and his picture takes all the brunt of not only ageing but also of anything he does in real life. How not only his wish comes true but changes his life upside down is what you need to read this book for. His love story with Sibyl Vane, Wow, it had me smiling, laughing, sad and heart-broken too but the way Wilde gave the two sides of their love story was simply heart-touching, totally loved it. The best love story ever. Dorian’s another best friend Lord Henry Wolton is another character that you just can’t not love in the story. Although at times he felt too old to be his friend but the guy is simply amazing and his love for Dorian over the sulky Basil who feels he is losing Dorian by introducing both of them to each other, is totally hilarious. The way story goes fast forward couple of years yet doesn’t loses its shine, the reader in me kept loving Dorian big time, I hated to love him for what he was doing with his life (and why) and later loved to hate him for that terrific ending too. Also, although written in the late 19th century still you can read so much in between Wilde’s lines, I was supremely impressed and in grins too. The man was totally amazing (read Oscar Wilde).
It was an amazing experience the way he put his own philosophy through the story of Dorian Gray. It never diverts from the story but he has incorporated so much in the longer version of the book which becomes an important part of the story too when he talks about the futility of our own lives, the young people wasting their youth unknowingly only to later regret at a very late stage when it is simply too late to amend the ways. Never expected it to be a such an eye opening philosophical story which made me fall in love more with it even more.
As I said, I bought the entire collection of Oscar Wilde’s work from Amazon (Kindle version) at throw away price. I read two versions back to back, the smaller magazine version which lasted close to 5 hours of constant reading and the detailed originally edited version which lasted close to 8 hours was totally awesome. I wish I had read the original version first and not the magazine version as it gave me the ending too fast but I enjoyed the second version which was in great details. I am now planning to get a Paperback Classic copy of the book too as unfortunately this is the only Novel that Oscar Wilde wrote and rest all are either short stories, plays or poems. But after reading and loving this (which will certainly now onward show up in my top 10 favorites of anytime) I am totally intrigued to read his stories, plays and even poetry. Guess this will be a damn good start for a guy like me who has never read poems in his life ever.
Have you read “The Picture of Dorian Gray”? do let me know how you loved it and if you haven’t read it yet, I will say dump whatever you are reading and read it first. You have no idea what you are missing. I am so looking forward to his stories now before attempting to read one of his plays.