Name: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Author: Mark Haddon
Christopher Boone has never been like any other fifteen year old boy. He dreams of one day being an astronaut – not only because he loves maths and science, but because of the silence he would have away from Earth. Away from people and their problems.
Yet he also loves logic. And when he discovers his neighbour’s dog dead in their garden, he decides that he must discover who the murderer was. Whatever the cost. However the investigation that takes places uncovers more mysteries closer to home that he could have ever imagined…
I think I’m really going to regret blogging this book and having to write out The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time so many times but never mind. I’ll just copy and paste. It really is a mystery book like no other. Despite it never actually being said, I assumed that Christopher is autistic and I’m pretty sure that that is the take that the play has given him as well (yes it’s been made into a PLAY. More on that later). He has trouble interacting with the people around him and needs things to be in a particular order. Christopher also isn’t very good at doing what he is told as he will follow warnings to the exact letter, which is helpful during his investigations. Also included in the book are scientific diagrams and notations – you don’t see very that often in a book! – which are quite interesting at the start, but there are whole pages are devoted to ‘How to Work Out Prime Numbers’ or ‘Diagrams of How the Solar System Works’. Not really adding anything to the story.
It’s not a particularly long book yet took a bit longer for me to read than a normal book of that length. I think one reason that The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is so short is that the author has really tried hard to make it seem as though it’s written by someone with autism, because along with the hefty diagrams, there is hardly any descriptions – of people, places, locations. The reader never finds to what Christopher looks like; I don’t think you even know whether he is white or black. The novel is padded out with whole-page images of tube stations or houses but again they don’t really add much. However, it was totally readable, the mystery is unexpected and I enjoyed it as books go. Above are just some of the suggestions I would have added.
SWEETENER: The chapters are really short and numbered as prime numbers instead of normal 1 2 3 which I thought was clever. As well as being engaging, it has a good mystery and page count, so I would recommend it to readers who maybe don’t like as heavy books. Nevertheless, there are some, er, profanities, that stop it being entirely suitable for like 9 year olds. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time has been made into a family play so I’m assuming that they’ve cleaned up the dad’s mouth and I’ve heard its really good. Personally, I’ve never seen the play, but it’s pretty big and is shown at the
West End :0
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