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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (original 2003; edition 2004)

by Mark Haddon

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
32,481102623 (3.9)928
Member:heracitus
Title:The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Authors:Mark Haddon
Info:Vintage (2004), Paperback, 226 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
Tags:None

Work details

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon (2003)

  1. 409
    Flowers for Algernon by Daniel Keyes (Cecrow, unlucky)
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    tortoise: Both are well-written novels with a first-person autistic-spectrum narrator. The Curious Incident has a better-constructed plot (the villain in The Speed of Dark is a bit cartoonish), but The Speed of Dark is I think more interesting as a commentary on autism.… (more)
    MyriadBooks: Undeservedly overshadowed by the concurrent publication of The Curious Incident, I found The Speed of Dark superior in every respect.
    Lucy_Skywalker: Speed of Dark is indeed superior in every respect: plot, characters, writing style, and the author has a better understanding of autistic people being the mother of one of them.
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» See also 928 mentions

English (971)  Spanish (18)  Dutch (13)  French (5)  German (5)  Italian (4)  Norwegian (2)  Catalan (2)  Romanian (1)  Korean (1)  Portuguese (Brazil) (1)  Finnish (1)  Swedish (1)  Danish (1)  Hungarian (1)  All languages (1,027)
Showing 1-5 of 971 (next | show all)
A great book about a kid who has Aspergers Syndrome, the book is written in his perspective. Very interesting. ( )
  Mediana | Dec 21, 2014 |
Wonderful book about a fascinating boy. ( )
  MiriamMartin | Dec 12, 2014 |
"Prime numbers are what is let when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never
work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them." (12)

From the Publisher:
"Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the colour yellow. This improbable story of Christopher's quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighbourhood dog makes for one of the most captivating, unusual, and widely heralded novels in recent years."

My Review:
The Curious Incident had me from the first page: not because the story is extraordinary in and of itself, but because I was completely taken with Christopher’s narration of events. His autistic, fact-by-fact account of events, perfectly devoid of emotion, was fascinating – as were his occasional internal dialogues about emotion, a concept he is informed about but simply unable to grasp. But particularly, his commentary of what happens to an autistic brain on overload not only moved me but enlightened me.

Haddon’s accomplishment is exceptional, first and foremost for giving voice to a marginalizing disorder – but also a huge win for young adult literature. Highly recommended!

In Christopher’s Words:
"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 in it is blocked up and there isn't any space left to think about other things. And when I am in a new place and there are lots of people there it is even harder because people are not like cows and flowers and grass and they can talk to you and do things that you don't expect, so you have to notice everything that is in the place, and also you have to notice things that might happen as well. And sometimes when I am in a new place and there are lots of people there it is like a computer crashing and I have to close my eyes and put my hands over my ears and groan, which is like pressing CTRL + ALT + DEL and shutting down programs and turning the computer off and rebooting so that I can remember what I am doing and where I am meant to be going." (143-44) ( )
2 vote lit_chick | Dec 4, 2014 |
'The curious incident of the dog in the night-time' by Mark Haddon is a fantastic book about a teenage boy called Christopher. Christopher has Aspergers and has trouble communicating with other people. This amazing story is about Christopher's journey, his struggles and the challenges he faces everyday. Christopher is a very memorable character who makes the reader see things through his perspective. Christopher has Aspergers and really makes the reader understand how he feels and the struggles that he faces on a daily basis. I would highly recommend that this book be read in a classroom as a mandatory reading. I think it will encourage readers to accept people and the challenges they face. it will also allow them to see things through different perspectives.
  lfasce1 | Dec 2, 2014 |
It was OK, I guess, but it read like it was written for the age group that it depicted (mid-teens), not for adults. I was not expecting it to be a young adult book, but that's definitely the category I would place it in. I did find it pretty funny when he was "detecting" about the death of Wellington, but I felt it kind of went off the rails into maudlin-land when it tried to teach a Valuable Life Lesson. ( )
1 vote sansmerci | Nov 16, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 971 (next | show all)
Mark Haddon specialises in innovative storylines in his work as an author, screenwriter and illustrator allied to his remarkable ability to demonstrate what it is to be autistic without sentimentality or exaggeration allied to a creative use of puzzles, facts and photographs in the text mark him out as a real talent drawing on a range of abilities.
 
As Christopher investigates Wellington's death, he makes some remarkably brave decisions and when he eventually faces his fears and moves beyond his immediate neighborhood, the magnitude of his challenge and the joy in his achievement are overwhelming. Haddon creates a fascinating main character and allows the reader to share in his world, experiencing his ups and downs and his trials and successes. In providing a vivid world in which the reader participates vicariously, Haddon fulfills the most important requirements of fiction, entertaining at the same time that he broadens the reader's perspective and allows him to gain knowledge. This fascinating book should attract legions of enthusiastic readers.
 
It's something of a miracle that Haddon (a children's book author-illustrator) never slips into condescension, given that the novel is premised on the reader's cognitive advantage—it derives much of its meaning from the gap between what Christopher perceives and what we understand based on the details he dispassionately communicates.
added by stephmo | editVillage Voice, Dennis Lim (Jul 22, 2003)
 
The imaginative leap of writing a novel -- the genre that began as an exercise in sentiment -- without overt emotion is a daring one, and Haddon pulls it off beautifully. Christopher's story is full of paradoxes: naive yet knowing, detached but poignant, often wryly funny despite his absolute humorlessness.
 
Haddon's book illuminates the way one mind works so precisely, so humanely, that it reads like both an acutely observed case study and an artful exploration of a different ''mystery'': the thoughts and feelings we share even with those very different from us.
 

» Add other authors (10 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mark Haddonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Boutavant, MarcCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Pallemans, HarryTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Tibber, BenNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Woodman, JeffNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Epigraph
Dedication
This book is dedicated to Sos
With thanks to Kathryn Heyman, Clare Alexander, Kate Shaw and Dave Cohen
First words
It was 7 minutes after midnight.
Quotations
Wellington was a poodle. Not one of the small poodles that have hair styles but a big poodle.
I like dogs. You always know what a dog is thinking. It has four moods. Happy, sad, cross and concentrating. Also, dogs are faithful and they do not tell lies because they cannot talk.
All the other children at my school are stupid. Except I'm not meant to call them stupid, even though this is what they are.
Prime numbers are what is left when you have taken all the patterns away. I think prime numbers are like life. They are very logical but you could never work out the rules, even if you spent all your time thinking about them.
I think people believe in heaven because they don’t like the idea of dying, because they want to carry on living and they don’t like the idea that other people will move into their house and put their things into the rubbish.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a murder mystery novel like no other. The detective, and narrator, is Christopher Boone. Christopher is fifteen and has Asperger's, a form of autism. He knows a very great deal about maths and very little about human beings. He loves lists, patterns and the truth. He hates the colours yellow and brown and being touched. He has never gone further than the end of the road on his own, but when he finds a neighbour's dog murdered he sets out on a terrifying journey which will turn his whole world upside down.

AR 5.4, 10 Pts
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0099450259, Paperback)

Mark Haddon's bitterly funny debut novel, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, is a murder mystery of sorts--one told by an autistic version of Adrian Mole. Fifteen-year-old Christopher John Francis Boone is mathematically gifted and socially hopeless, raised in a working-class home by parents who can barely cope with their child's quirks. He takes everything that he sees (or is told) at face value, and is unable to sort out the strange behavior of his elders and peers.

Late one night, Christopher comes across his neighbor's poodle, Wellington, impaled on a garden fork. Wellington's owner finds him cradling her dead dog in his arms, and has him arrested. After spending a night in jail, Christopher resolves--against the objection of his father and neighbors--to discover just who has murdered Wellington. He is encouraged by Siobhan, a social worker at his school, to write a book about his investigations, and the result--quirkily illustrated, with each chapter given its own prime number--is The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time.

Haddon's novel is a startling performance. This is the sort of book that could turn condescending, or exploitative, or overly sentimental, or grossly tasteless very easily, but Haddon navigates those dangers with a sureness of touch that is extremely rare among first-time novelists. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is original, clever, and genuinely moving: this one is a must-read. --Jack Illingworth, Amazon.ca

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:59 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

Despite his overwhelming fear of interacting with people, Christopher, a mathematically-gifted, autistic fifteen-year-old boy, decides to investigate the murder of a neighbor's dog and uncovers secret information about his mother.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 13 descriptions

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