The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

A review by Sophie Roque, Library Volunteer

The story of 12-year-old Christopher Boone is an unfolding mystery of a neighbor’s dog that soon pulls in all the biggest mysteries of his own life as well. Told from a first-person perspective, the reader gets full access to Christopher’s curious mind. Readers will be fascinated by his seemingly endless supply of obscure facts and astonishing mathematical skills. Christopher’s sharp memory also adds an amount of detail almost never seen in books, which is enhanced by the many graphics and illustrations included alongside the text.

Christopher’s narration fully displays unique way of thinking and seeing the world. While he may seem odd or eccentric, the novel endears us to him as he navigates the challenges sparked by the strange case. He must also learn to navigate the complicated relationships of the people around him in a way that he never had before. From the parts of his family life kept secret by his father, to the intricate connections he learns about in his own life, there are more mysteries in this book than the one in the title.

Christopher’s journey as a detective reveals parts of life that are messy, complex, and confusing, especially to his well-ordered and logical mind. These issues are usually the business of adults, like his patient father and various neighbors, but Christopher plunges headfirst into them as part of his investigation. The reader joins him as he gathers his courage and wit to unravel these tangled threads of life and finally set them straight.

Genre: Fiction, mystery
Content warning: Swearing, implied violence against an animal, death of an animal, vulgar reference to sex, mention of slurs against autistic people, mention of slurs against disabled people, mentions of infidelity, violence against children, mention of drugs, mention of porn Suitability for children: Suitable for older children and teens

Vintage Books div. of Random House Publishing: c2003, 226 p.
Pb., ISBN: 1-40007783-4.

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