“Lots of things are mysteries. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t an answer to them.”

Mark Haddon’s The curious incident of the dog in the night-time has the distinction of being the first novel ever to be published simultaneously in two editions- one for adults and one for children. A special mention must go to Paul Blow for the beautiful cover illustration in the young adult’s book.

The novel is written in the first person where the main character, Christopher Boone, is also the narrator. He is a fifteen year old boy from Swindon with Asperger’s Syndrome who loves maths and his pet rat, Toby. The story begins when Christopher finds his neighbour’s dog lying on the lawn with a fork sticking out of his guts. He begins to write a murder mystery novel to find out the culprit. What ensues complicates his life more than he could have predicted. One interesting aspect of this book is that the chapters of this book are prime numbers. Beginning from ‘2’, they go up to the last chapter, which is numbered ‘233’.

Mother used to say my name ‘Christopher’ was a nice name because it was a story about being kind and helpful, but I do not want my name to mean a story about being kind and helpful. I want my name to mean me.’

Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

Christopher isn’t your typical teenager. Interested in maths, the night sky and logic puzzles, he is the totally opposite definition of a teenager. ‘Not eating food if different sorts of food are touching each other’ and ‘not liking yellow or brown things and refusing to touch or eat yellow or brown things’ might not be behavioural problems that a normal teenager might have. But, that’s Christopher’s uniqueness and it is what makes the novel much more interesting to read.

Reading this novel will take you to the part of your childhood that was bliss. When lies were spoken by evil people, being cool was acting strange and when being a detective on a mock-case to save the world was fun! What makes this novel unique is the fact that Christopher never lies. He simply cannot. As one reads on, more is known about him and we choose to revel in the simplicity of his nature instead of questioning it- because that is how Christopher is. At one point of our life, we all were Christophers, but we lost the freshness somewhere along the way.


Author: Mark Haddon | Pages: 272| Format: Paperback |Published by: Vintage Classic