For my book review this month, I've opted to talk about a classic I've only read for the first time this year - THE PICTURE OF DORIAN GRAY by Oscar Wilde.
Last year, I wrote a short story for Chrysalis about a really creepy painting. I didn't realise at the time that DORIAN GRAY was also about a creepy painting. Somebody commented that part of my story reminded them of this classic novel. Having now read Wilde's classic work for myself, I can definitely see the parallels. And I can attest to the sheer creepiness of the original!
While this book no doubt has some deep meaning about gluttony and greed and how we should age gracefully, all I can really focus on is that totally messed up painting. I wasn't sure what to expect as the end of the story drew nearer. Would the painted image step off the canvas and start killing everybody? Would fleshly Dorian run off and kill his dear friend Harry? He seemed to be pretty into that sort of thing by then. So as not to spoil the ending, I will simply say that the ending wasn't a letdown!
To summarise, I'd call this a dark and seedy story of one man's slow but steady demise - his twisting from something almost angelic into something truly monstrous. I haven't quite decided whose fault his downfall was - his friend Harry for being such a bad influence, or himself for being so dangerously vain at his core? Thinking about it now, the story reminds me a little of Kirino's GROTESQUE, which I read last year. Only GROTESQUE was utterly littered with characters who went from good to oh so bad.
Sunday Session #8