The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time: Children's Edition

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9780099456766: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time: Children's Edition

Fifteen-year-old Christopher has a photographic memory. He understands maths. He understands science. What he can't understand are other human beings. When he finds his neighbour's dog lying dead on the lawn, he decides to track down the killer and write a murder mystery about it. But what other mysteries will he end up uncovering?

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Review:

The title The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time (or the curious incident of the dog in the night-time as it appears within the book) is an appropriate one for Mark Haddon's ingenious novel both because of its reference to that most obsessive and fact-obsessed of detectives, Sherlock Holmes, and because its lower-case letters indicate something important about its narrator.

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.

Haddon makes an intelligent stab at how it feels to, for example, not know how to read the faces of the people around you, to be perpetually spooked by certain colours and certain levels of noise, to hate being touched to the point of violent reaction. Life is difficult for the difficult and prickly Christopher in ways that he only partly understands; this avoids most of the obvious pitfalls of novels about disability because it demands that we respect--perhaps admire--him rather than pity him. --Roz Kaveney

Review:

"The book gave me that rare, greedy feeling of: this is so good I want to read it all at once but I mustn't or it will be over too soon. Haddon pulls off something extraordinary . . ." -- "The Observer" "Always surprising and often hilarious." -- "The Globe and Mail" "One of the most affecting things I've read in years . . . it's brilliant." -- "The Guardian" "Mark Haddon's new novel comes with glowing endorsements from Ian McEwan and Oliver Sacks . . . For once, the pundits speak the truth." -- "The Economist" "A stark, funny and original first novel . . . [with] one of the strangest and most convincing characters in recent fiction." -- "The New York Times Book Review" "A brilliant autism novel has been overdue -- and this is it! The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Mark Haddon shows great insight into the autistic mind, and he brings his young narrator protagonist quite wonderfully to life. I found it very moving, very plausible -- and "very" funny." -- Oliver Sacks, author of Uncle Tungsten "I have never read anything quite like Mark Haddon's funny and agonizingly honest book, or encountered a narrator more vivid and memorable. I advise you to buy two copies; you won't want to lend yours out." -- Arthur Golden, author of Memoirs of a Geisha "The Curious Incident brims with imagination, empathy, and vision -- plus it's a lot of fun to read." -- Myla Goldberg, author of Bee Season "Mark Haddon's portrayal of an emotionally disassociated mind is a superb achievement. He is a wise and bleakly funny writer with rare gifts of empathy." -- Ian McEwan, author of Atonement "From the Trade Paperback edition."

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Mark Haddon
Published by Random House Children's Books (2004)
ISBN 10: 0099456761 ISBN 13: 9780099456766
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