Friday 22 April 2011

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon - Book Review

Title: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Author: Mark Haddon
Publisher: Vintage
Publication Date: 2003
Format: Paperback
Pages: 270
Genre: Literary Fiction
Source: Free World Book Night 2011 copy

Christopher is an intelligent youth who lives in the functional hinterland of autism--every day is an investigation for him because of all the aspects of human life that he does not quite get. When the dog next door is killed with a garden fork, Christopher becomes quietly persistent in his desire to find out what has happened and tugs away at the world around him until a lot of secrets unravel messily.(Goodreads Synopsis)

This was another book club read for me and overall I liked it.

Haddon creates a wonderful voice for his young protagonist that comes across as real and totally believable. I loved the inclusion of maths problems etc as Christopher tries to make sense of what is happening in the world around him. It gave the piece a sense of grounded reality that might otherwise have been lacking

The story just about held my interest, though I doubt it would do so for a second reading, which is why I am giving it three stars and not four. One of the main problems I had is that it sets itself up as a mystery-to-be-solved piece, but in the end there is no mystery and the reader is several steps ahead of Christopher by the middle of the book, destroying any suspense and relying on the reader's compassion for Christopher to keep them reading till the end.

For a one time, quick read, this is a nice little book, but it's not something you'll want to return to again and again.

1 comment:

  1. I liked this book although it is a weird one. I liked Christopher and it was a small view into the life of a child with autism, my o/h recomended it for me