The Picture Of Dorian Gray was June’s read. The classic story of a man that keeps a painting of himself in the attic in order to stay young gave us quite a lot to discuss. A few members unfortunately didn’t have chance to complete the book but those that did were mostly in agreement that there was far too much text involved when fewer words could have been used to describe things. However one point that was raised in relation to this was, at the time the book was written, people didn’t travel the world, all learn about things through a range of different medias, therefore a vast description was required to make people aware of what was being discussed.
The essence of the book was reminiscent of its time, although it was felt that the book read more like a play – was that Wilde’s first foray into writing and wasn’t able to branch out into fiction as such?
One question raised was if you had to be aware of the famous trial of Wilde and his eventual incarseration in prison in order to fully appreciate the novel? I think we came to the conclusion that this wasn’t necessary but the knowledge of such, gave a better understanding of why and how the novel was written.
The novel was definitely moralistic and noted that the character of Henry was definitely a reincarnated ‘devil’.
Although it was a book that wasn’t exactly a favourite, it certainly gave us a good topic of discussion, but probably not one that we read again.