Steven Crossley provides a riveting performance of Oscar Wilde’s classic tale of morality, hypocrisy, and depravity. Wilde’s subtle, ironic comments are handled with ease by Crossley. He delivers Dorian Gray’s fateful statement - “If it were I who was to be always young, and the picture that was to grow old! . . . I would give my soul for that!” - with all the flamboyance of the young British sophisticate. Crossley’s delivery of the lighthearted banter between nineteenth-century fashionable folk is musical; whereas, as Gray’s dissipation becomes evident, he creates spine-tingling horror.
Oscar Wilde’s classic story of a young man who sells his soul in exchange for eternal beauty and youth continues to thrill generations of readers. Written by a man who was every bit as flamboyant and unconventional as its hero, The Picture of Dorian Gray is as haunting today as when it first shocked the British public in 1891. Dorian Gray, young, intelligent, sophisticated, gazes on his freshly painted portrait. Wishfully, he murmurs, “If it were I who was to be always young, and the picture that was to grow old! … I would give my soul for that!” From that moment, as Dorian spends his days enjoying the splendors of the world and his nights exploring its depravity and sin, his face remains untouched by life. In The Picture of Dorian Gray, Oscar Wilde creates a metaphor that transcends a specific era to become a timeless reflection on the nature of art, morality, and beauty—and a splendid horror story. Narrator Steven Crossley’s performance highlights the interplay of innocence and corruption that weaves a dark, seductive spell on all who encounter this enigmatic work.
©1891 Public Domain (P)1997 Recorded Books, LLC
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"Dorian Gray" unwinds like a spool of thread, slowly and carefully, and you'll find it rewarding IF...
1. You have patience. Friends of mine complain that this book doesn't do enough with its premise but the slow unraveling of Gray's psyche and escalation of stakes was plenty for me. Don't read if you expect the frequent action of a Stieg Larsson novel.
2. You enjoy rich, detailed prose. Wilde is a master in this way.
3. You like high concept novels executed with strong form and maturity. "Dorian Gray" could be garish and awful, but instead has the same mournful and earnest reverence for its innate horror as Shelley's "Frankenstein."
The narration is excellent - playful and 100% listenable. This audiobook was a pleasure in so many ways, and a potent introduction to Wilde's literary prose.
It ranks on the top 10.
I loved how the main character, Dorian Gray, developed and became more and more corrupted until his doom.
Yes, the moment when Dorian committed his ultimate sin. Won't tell what it was, you'll have to find out.
A great story that makes you take upon phylosophycal thoughts.
Lord Henry because what ever he says make sense and it is true. He is trying to teach Dorian that he should enjoy his life while he is young. God did not create us we, human created God.
Nope but he is great performer.
No just amazed by a great original idea by Oscar Wilde
I thought I knew the story of Dorian Grey, I did not. I found that I was as transfixed with him and his story as much as the characters in the book were. Great classic story, this has made me go back and read (sometimes re-read) the classics!
I read this book for a lit class in college back in the 1980s. It has stuck with me ever since and I was excited to see it on Audible.
Lord Henry ("Harry") has got to be the book's most well-developed character. He is eccentric, articulate, likable, quick tongued, and terribly corrupt. He is evil in the most pleasant and fascinating way. He directs innocent Dorian on a course of damnation, yet you secretly want to be like him.
Yes. My biggest criticism of the narrating is the pace. I am wondering if this is one of Steve's first audiobooks. If so, his later ones will probably be better. In this one he left long pauses where they were not warranted which kind of upset the flow and pace. He could have also used better developed emotions. However, his voice was pleasant, he did a decent job of adapting it to various characters and personalities (there are only 3 primary characters in the story but several minor ones), and his diction was good.
I remember reading this book in high school, but never finished it. I wanted to reacquaint myself with the classics. Now I remember why I could not finish this. Although the concept of Dorian Gray is important and fascinating, it was a struggle to get through all the overwrought and overdone dialogue. No one just spoke their lines, they cried out. nobody just sat on a couch, they threw themselves on the couch, a couch that was invariably overstuffed. Even the narrator joins in on the witty and cynical epigrams that come in every other line. perhaps this is what sold books in the 19th century England, and people expected a finger wagging cautionary tale. by the way, the character of Dorian Gray is being explored and developed quite admirably in the TV series penny dreadful.
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