book review

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

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This is Christopher’s murder mystery story. There are also no lies in this story because Christopher can’t tell lies. Christopher does not like strangers or the colours yellow or brown or being touched. On the other hand, he knows all the countries in the world and their capital cities and every prime number up to 7507” .

I couldn’t have written a better summary of the book and hence used Mark Haddon’s, the author, words to describe what follows in the next 200 odd pages. When I try to qualify this book, I am looking for a word which means beautiful and captivating, innocent and candid, all of it together. But my vocab doesn’t extend that far and I settle with describing the feeling of reading the book as like watching a baby looking into nothing and smiling a toothless smile.

So by now you know that the book is about a boy named Christopher
and the gruesome murder of a dog at night. The story opens with the murder scene as is expected from a book with this title. And just like every other murder mystery, there is a detective, needless to say its Christopher in this case, a host of witnesses, some willing and some hostile, the police and finally the culprit. But the story is much more than this. The story is about love and determination, about expectations and pushing boundaries. Its about Christopher, a boy with Asperger’s and the world as he sees it, the world that he shares.

The language is simple and fluid and also supremely logical, just like Christopher’s brain. This is probably the only murder mystery you would read which will also teach you how to work out a prime number and to prove that ‘a triangle with sides that can be written in the form n2+1, n2-1 and 2n (where n>1) is right angled‘.

I don’t think I would be able to write much in form of a review here without giving out too much of the book already. And my intent would be to ignite in you the interest to go and read this book because this is a remarkably unusual and engrossing story. Something you will want to start over the minute you have finished it.

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