Vintage Books a division of Random House Publishers
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
BOOK DESCRIPTION -
Christopher John Francis Boone knows all the countries of the world and their capitals and every prime number up to 7,057. He relates well to animals but has no understanding of human emotions. He cannot stand to be touched. And he detests the colour yellow.
This improbable story of Christopher’s quest to investigate the suspicious death of a neighbourhood dog makes for one of the most captivating, unusual, and widely heralded novels in recent years.
Christopher, a young boy with Asbergers syndrome, discovers his neighbour’s poodle dead, impaled by a pitchfork, and he is curious and deternined to solve the crime. Christopher has a form of autism, and is a child who doesn’t like anyone to touch him, even his parents. He does not display the normal range of emotions and cannot decipher other peoples emotions. The writer very skillfully give a sense of how much courage Christopher needs to deal with his problems and the mystery of the dead dog. He constructs his world with mathematics and numbers give him a measure of security. The Mystery does get solved but Christipher does not understand the emotional turmoil behind the incident.
This book is a very sad but accurate portrayal of the limitations of Asbergers The parents do not get positive returns for the love they have for their son, which is the most difficult aspect of Asbergers for the carers. You get the feeling that Christopher and his parents are very likeable, and doing the best they can. This is a simply written book, and easily read in a couple of sitting, but it is well worth a second read as the writing is quite subtle at times, but the language is simple as told from the boys point of view.
Having worked with families who have an autistic child I think this writer has a really great insite into the sadness and frustration felt when communication is at its most difficult. I would recommend this as a great read. Easily read in a couple of sittings, although its impact will last much longer. Highly recommended for a general readership.