Thursday, February 7, 2008

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

What happens when the narrator of what should be a very emotionally charged story is an autistic teen who can not understand emotions? You have Mark Haddon's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. In The Curious Incident, Christopher Boone (age15 years, 3 months, and 2 days) finds his neighbors dog killed. He decides to follow the example of Sherlock Holmes and investigate in an attempt to find out who killed the dog. This is an incredible story of discovery and adventure, as told by Christopher in his uniquely logical, factual point of view. Haddon expertly defines the limitations of his autistic character in a heart wrenching story. While Christopher is not always likeable, readers can truly empathize with him and what his search uncovers. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time won the 2003 Whitbread Award. My hardcover copy was published in July 2003, and has 226 pages. This is an excellent book and I highly recommend it. Rating: 4.5

"Prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all you time thinking about them." pg. 12

"But I said that you could still want something that is very unlikely to happen." pg. 25

"When she tells me not to do something she tells me exactly what it is that I am not allowed to do. And I like this." pg. 29

"My memory is like a film. That is why I am really good at remembering things, like conversations I have written down in this book, and what people were wearing, and what they smelled like, because my memory has a smelltrack which is like a soundtrack." pg. 76

"Except I can't remember anything before I was about 4 because I wasn't looking at things in the right way before then, so they didn't get recorded properly." pg. 77

"And it means that sometimes things are so complicated that it is impossible to predict what they are going to do next, but they are only obeying really simple rules." pg. 102

"And when I am in a new place, because I see everything, it is like when a computer is doing too many things at the same time and the central processor unit is blocked up and there isn't any space left to think about other things." pg. 143


Maw Books said...

I highly enjoyed this book. It was a great read. Another book you might be interested in is Rules by Cynthia Lord (juvenile fiction). It is about a girl who has a autistic little brother and recounts the rules she makes for him to avoid any embarrassing mishaps.

bookinhand said...

I read this book last year and loved it! I'm glad you enjoyed it too! I enjoyed your selection of quotes. Diane