Do you like books that contain interesting characters, a touch of mystery, and are filled with humor and insight? If you are in the mood for an unusual mystery, read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. The story is told through the eyes of a unique and talented youngster, Christopher John Francis Boone. From the beginning, we enter the mind, including the thought processes and emotions of this young autistic boy.
Christopher speaks to us in a simplistic style as he introduces his family and friends. As he describes his interactions with neighbors, friends and family, we develop an insight into his emotional maturity, thoughts and feelings. We experience the joys, frustrations and day-to-day emotions of an autistic individual as he relates his account of the mysterious death of a neighborhood poodle named Wellington. The mystery itself is quite unusual, adding to the wit and eccentric flavor of the book. Through the eyes of this character, we increase our depth of understanding of autism. We also gain an understanding of the importance of centering our attention on the abilities of the individual.
The author’s interesting and engaging style allows us to better understand the character’s emotions and behavior. We watch Christopher develop and mature as he experiences the joy that comes with knowing that he can do so much more than he ever thought possible. The beauty of this book lies in the realization that although being autistic causes certain difficulties, there is so much joy to life as well. This truly creative story enables us to see the abilities, emotions and insight unique to each individual.