Mark Haddon’s The curious incident of the dog in the night-time is curiously heart-warming and starkly realistic at the same time. With an unusual title like that,i really expected it to be more of a funny read ,but it most definitely is not funny in a slapstick kind of a way.There are oodles of dry wit in the book, though.Curious Incident is the story of Christopher,a 15 year old who is afflicted with Asperger’s syndrome.Christopher’s an exceptionally gifted child when it comes to logic and maths,but lacks social skills.When the neighbor’s dog is found dead,he decides to investigate the death.
As Christopher investigates the dog’s death,he stumbles upon startling revelations and this takes in on a special journey of his life.As you read his take on Physics and stars and tens of other things that he thinks about,you can’t but help saying “Awww..”.He chronicles his investigations along with this thoughts in a book. The book also showcases the thoughts and anguishes that a boy with special needs has in a beautiful way.The writing is adorable with wonderful illustrations done by Mark Haddon himself.
This is a book that will come haunt you even after you are done with it.It is a book you would want your children to read. Sensitive and queerly amusing.It will make you do a rethink on the way you have perceived children with special needs.Also,the difficulties and trials that the care-givers and the parents face in taking care of such special children are covered in the book.It’s amazing how a book without a crazy ,intricate plot can still make good fiction.
Apparently,Mark Haddon drew upon his own experiences of working with such special children from his younger days in writing this book.The narrative flows well despite the choppiness of the content.The choppiness is,of course intentional as the book is written from the perspective of a special child.Though touted as a Young Adult book,i thought Curious incident is a very philosophical book that will appeal more to adults. Mark Haddon says that this is among his first books that was written specifically to cater to both adult and YA audiences.The book won the 2003 Whitbread book of the year and Commonwealth Prize for the best First book.Justifiably so.
A wonderful book that needs to be savored.