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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Modern Plays) (original 2003; edition 2012)

by Mark Haddon, Simon Stephens (Adapter)

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35,255114417 (3.9)1058
Member:lisathomson
Title:The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time (Modern Plays)
Authors:Mark Haddon
Other authors:Simon Stephens (Adapter)
Info:Methuen Drama (2012), Edition: 1, Paperback, 112 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:***
Tags:None

Work details

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

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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 1058 mentions

English (1,082)  Spanish (18)  Dutch (15)  French (6)  Italian (5)  German (5)  Catalan (3)  Norwegian (2)  Romanian (1)  Korean (1)  All (1)  Swedish (1)  Finnish (1)  Danish (1)  Hungarian (1)  All (1,143)
Showing 1-5 of 1082 (next | show all)
No, non mi è piaciuto granchè. Trovo che l'idea sia originale, ma naufraga poco alla volta. Diventa ripetitivo, perde interesse ed alla fine mi sono reso conto che a parte stupirmi con un personaggio improbabile non mi ha dato quasi niente. Non ne consiglio la lettura. ( )
  Spiffhero | Jun 22, 2017 |
Meticulously imagines the frustrations of an autistic's world, where sensory intake is heightened but the capacity to process information diminished. ( )
  christinedux | Jun 7, 2017 |
What an exceptional book, brimming with wisdom. Heartwarming and life-affirming ( )
  Soulmuser | May 30, 2017 |
Guest review by my 14-year old daughter:

There are two curious things about this novel.

The first is that the way the book is written is just as, and arguably more, important than the story itself. This is because it’s told in the first person, from the viewpoint of an autistic boy (named Christopher) which makes the way it’s written very different from a usual book, even one told in the first person, as normal rules of grammar (like run-on sentences) don’t apply. Also, what is usually considered ‘good writing’ totally changes; I noticed that many consecutive sentences start with the same word (e.g. ‘so’; ‘and’).

The second is that the story starts with and, based on the title, seems to revolve around the murder of a neighbor’s dog. (The back cover even mentions Christopher’s ‘quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighborhood dog’.) But the truth is, although the story does begin with him finding the murdered dog, and his subsequent determination to find its murderer illuminates an important part of his character, it is only one of the subjects the plot focuses on. In fact, the mystery as to who killed the dog is solved halfway through the novel, and although Christopher’s prying certainly contributed to the revelation, eventually the culprit confesses the truth without any coercion. What fills the rest of the novel is the narrator’s real quest—to London, alone, in search of his mother—and the aftermath of that journey.

Returning to the first point, I thought the novel succeeded in providing a window to the mind of a child with autism; the narration was convincing. Some of the things that make the narrator different from normal people include not liking being touched in any way by anyone, and refusing to touch things that are the colors he detests (namely, yellow and brown)—although he seems to at least partially overcome the second problem on his journey to London. But he’s also a mathematical genius (the book includes illustrations of a few math problems that were beyond my comprehension, which makes me wonder if the author also has a talent for math, or, at the least, an avid interest).

The author’s biography mentions that he has ‘worked with autistic individuals’. He must have to write a book that so successfully, in my opinion, reveals the thoughts of its narrator! After reading this, I feel I have gained a deeper understanding of what it’s like to be someone like the narrator of the novel. For that reason, and because it’s quite entertaining, this book is definitely worth reading. ( )
1 vote datrappert | May 29, 2017 |
An interesting read from an interesting perspective ( )
  Razinha | May 23, 2017 |
Showing 1-5 of 1082 (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.
 
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.
 
Mark Haddon's stark, funny and original first novel, ''The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,'' is presented as a detective story. But it eschews most of the furnishings of high-literary enterprise as well as the conventions of genre, disorienting and reorienting the reader to devastating effect.
 

» Add other authors (12 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Mark Haddonprimary authorall editionscalculated
Boutavant, MarcCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cardenas, AlejandroCover artistsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Carella, MariaDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kaye, Michael IanCover designersecondary 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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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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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 Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:07:22 -0400)

(see all 5 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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