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

curious incidentChristopher John Francis Boone knows every prime number up to 7,057, is in the highest maths course possible for his age, and counts to 50 while calculating their cubes in his head when he gets frustrated. On the other hand, looking at the color yellow gives him a headache, he can’t stand people touching him, and too much noise makes him groan. When his neighbor’s dog is murdered, there is only one thing he can think of to do: become a detective.

What I Thought of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

I knew from the first few pages of this book that it wasn’t going to be for everyone. Christopher’s narration was simultaneously quick, rambling, and going off into tangents about mathematics, the human mind, and the universe. Although these tangents were usually well beyond my knowledge and forced me to reread multiple times, I ultimately found them to be quite fascinating. However, I can see why some readers wouldn’t like them. The narration felt confusing and random at times, but I think that was a brilliant and realistic way of portraying Christopher’s unique way of thinking.

It’s very difficult to explain the plot of this book. It included so many sub-plots that the main mystery story seemed to become somewhat lost, which was disappointing because a dog murder seemed very original and intriguing to me. Similar to the narration, the plot was rarely going one way, which made it clear that The Curious Incident was definitely not a plot-driven novel. Instead, it focused more on Christopher’s opinions on everyday things, the logical approach he took to life, and the reasons for his sometimes erratic behavior, which were all interesting, but certainly not mysterious or suspenseful like I was expecting.

The absolute best part of this book were the plot detours taken to delve into topics like outer space, the meaning of life, and what it means to die. Despite the fact that my understanding of what Christopher expressed is still very shaky, I was captivated by how he viewed things. One thing I will say is that these tangents were very mentally draining, as was The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time in general. Readers who like constant action or have no interest in these subjects would find this book very difficult to get through, but I loved these parts best of all.

Overall, this book had an unexpected plot, a narration that wasn’t afraid to include many different focuses, and in-depth discussions of science. Once again, this book is definitely not going to please everyone, as I enjoyed it for the most part, but could completely see action readers wanting to toss it in a fire. Overall, The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time offers an authentic depiction of a main character on the autistic spectrum, too many plots to count, and several spectacular scientific elaborations that earned 3.5 stars from me.

The most memorable part of this book is when the murder is suddenly solved. Even though the answer was completely obvious, I was so wrapped up in the sub-plots that it caught me off guard, which is why it became my favorite moment of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time.

Overall Rating: 3.5 Stars