Beth's Reviews > The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
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Feb 03, 08

bookshelves: whimsical-reads
Read in February, 2008

A very charming, insightful, engaging book. From the perspective of a 15-year-old boy who has a kind of high-functioning autism (which may not be autism, actually, but Asberger's?).

Some mature themes. Here are some of my favorite quotes:

“For example, this morning for breakfast I had Ready Brek and some hot raspberry milk shake. But if I say that I actually had Shreddies and a mug of tea (footnote: But I wouldn’t have Shreddies and tea because they are both brown.) I start thinking about Coco Pops and lemonade and porridge and Dr Pepper and how I wasn’t eating my breakfast in Egypt and there wasn’t a rhinoceros in the room and Father wasn’t wearing a diving suit and so on and even writing this makes me feel shaky and scared, like I do when I’m standing on the top of a very tall building and there are thousands of houses and cars and people below me and my head is so full of all these things that I’m afraid that I’m going to forget to stand up straight and hang on to the rail and I’m going to fall over and be killed. This is another reason why I don’t like proper novels…” pg. 19

“I said that I wasn’t clever. I was just noticing how things were, and that wasn’t clever. That was just being observant. Being clever was when you looked at how things were and used the evidence to work out something new. Like the universe expanding, or who committed a murder. Or if you see someone’s name and you give each letter a value from 1 to 26 (a = 1, b =2, etc.) and you add the numbers up in your head and you find that it makes a prime number, like Jesus Christ (151), or Scooby-Doo (113), or Sherlock Holmes (163), or Doctor Watson (167).

Mr. Jeavons asked me whether this made me feel safe, having things always in a nice order, and I said it did.
Then he asked if I didn’t like things changing. And I said I wouldn’t mind things changing if I became an astronaut, for example, which is one of the biggest changes you can imagine, apart from becoming a girl or dying.” pg. 25

“Mrs. Alexander didn’t say anything. She walked to the little red box on a pole next to the gate to the park and she put Ivor’s poo into the box, which was a brown thing inside a red thing, which made my head feel funny so I didn’t look. Then she walked back to me.” pg. 57

“On the fifth day, which was a Sunday, it rained very hard. I like it when it rains hard. It sounds like white noise everywhere, which is like silence but not empty.” pg. 103

“And when I am in a new place, because I see everything, it is like when a computer is doing too many things at the same time and the central processor unit is blocked up and there isn’t any space left to think about other things. And when I am in a new place and there are lots of people there it is even harder because people are not like cows and flowers and grass and they can talk to you and do things that you don’t expect, so you have to notice everything that is in the place, and also you have to notice things that might happen as well. And sometimes when I am in a new place and there are lots of people there it is like a computer crashing and I have to close my eyes and put my hands over my years and groan, which is like pressing CTRL + ALT + DEL and shutting down programs and turning the computer off and rebooting so that I can remember what I am doing and where I am meant to be going.” pgs. 143-144
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Comments (showing 1-2 of 2) (2 new)

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Carly Svamvour That's the thing that made it interesting, eh? The guy that wrote it actually works with autistic people, so he had an idea of what his character would do and think.




Mereworth Bosh which is quite clever since he observed what his characters are like and used the evidence to create a fairly plausible novel from the point of view of someone very like his patients. Personally, I find these quotes very endrearing and quite clever, because they are a way of thinking that we as normal people without autism dont usually contemplate and its very satisfyingly factual.


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