Englischsprachige Literatur

Haddon Mark

The curious incident of the dog in the night-time

Vintage London, 2003


The hero of this prize-winning novel is 15-year-old Christopher Boone, an autistic boy, who tells the story exclusively from his point of view. Siobhan, his teacher at school, has advised him to write something he himself would like to read, and so he is looking for interesting events in his life.

When he finds the neighbour´s dog dead in the courtyard he thinks it would make a good story to find the murderer. It is very difficult for him to get  his investigations going because he is suffering from phobias and inhibitions of all kinds. So he can´t be touched by anybody, not even by his father, he hates certain meals and colours and can´t stand new situations and people. On the other hand he is a mathematical genius and likes rules, lists and diagrams.

It´s Haddon´s superb achievement, that this narrative perspective is totally convincing, sometimes funny, most often very sad and moving. Specially so, as Christopher´s father has a very troubled personality, too. And Christopher, with all his handicaps, turns out to be superior to both his parents. The only problem with this book is, that after about half of it, you know exactly what the next move or thought of Christopher might be, and the thrill wears off a bit.