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Book Review: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

I’m extremely late to this party. Really, really late. Like 2 years late.

I finally decided to read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon! Woohoo! Yay! Other party noises!

I know this has been reviewed a fair few times, I’ll keep it short and sweet; I’m trying to get into the habit of writing about every book I read and posting regularly, so bear with me, please?

In case you aren’t aware, here is a quick summery (from the blurb):

curious“The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is a murder mystery novel like no other. The detective and narrator, is Christoper Boone. Christopher is 15 and has Asperger’s Syndrome. 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.”

I picked this book up because I wanted a change of pace from my usual reading list of sci-fi/fantasy/YA novels and had heard great things about it. I didn’t really know what to expect and I was pleasantly surprised. The writing style gives an amazing insight into how people living with Asperger’s Syndrome think and react to everyday life, and by the end of the book I was genuinely proud of what Christopher had achieved; facing his fears, taking his A Levels, all very admirable accomplishments. I loved having this glimpse into a different perspective on life and it was a very interesting read, aside from the overuse of the word ‘and’ (which was totally justified and in character but still annoying.)

My one issue is that some of the chapters where completely unrelated to the plot. One minute Christopher is talking to a policeman or a neighbour about the murder, the next hes telling a story about a maths problem. Some of these tangents were clearly detailing thought processes and helping us and Christopher come to a conclusion about the murder and the story, however one or two seemed completely irrelevant. Thinking about it, that was probably an intentional character driven narrative device/some subtle nuance that I just missed.

While I thoroughly enjoyed this glimpse into another perspective, it was hard to get fully immersed in the world without proper description. There are some genuinely funny and moving moments and the characters are just complicated enough that it’s not an open and shut case and they are all just nasty enough that you don’t know who to root for.

*** 3/5

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