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The curious incident of the dog in the night-time
Mark Haddon
Adult Fiction HADDON

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From Publishers' Weekly:

Christopher Boone, the autistic 15-year-old narrator of this revelatory novel, relaxes by groaning and doing math problems in his head, eats red-but not yellow or brown-foods and screams when he is touched. Strange as he may seem, other people are far more of a conundrum to him, for he lacks the intuitive "theory of mind" by which most of us sense what's going on in other people's heads. When his neighbor's poodle is killed and Christopher is falsely accused of the crime, he decides that he will take a page from Sherlock Holmes (one of his favorite characters) and track down the killer. As the mystery leads him to the secrets of his parents' broken marriage and then into an odyssey to find his place in the world, he must fall back on deductive logic to navigate the emotional complexities of a social world that remains a closed book to him. In the hands of first-time novelist Haddon, Christopher is a fascinating case study and, above all, a sympathetic boy: not closed off, as the stereotype would have it, but too open-overwhelmed by sensations, bereft of the filters through which normal people screen their surroundings. Christopher can only make sense of the chaos of stimuli by imposing arbitrary patterns ("4 yellow cars in a row made it a Black Day, which is a day when I don't speak to anyone and sit on my own reading books and don't eat my lunch and Take No Risks"). His literal-minded observations make for a kind of poetic sensibility and a poignant evocation of character. Though Christopher insists, "This will not be a funny book. I cannot tell jokes because I do not understand them," the novel brims with touching, ironic humor. The result is an eye-opening work in a unique and compelling literary voice. (June 17) Forecast: Considerable buzz abroad-rights sold in Brazil, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Holland, Italy, Japan, Norway, Spain, Sweden and the U.K.-and a film deal (rights bought by Hey Day, the makers of Harry Potter) augur well for this engaging debut. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

From Library Journal:

Fifteen-year-old Christopher Boone has Asperger's syndrome, a form of autism. He does not like to be touched, hates yellow and brown, and begins screaming when confronted with unfamiliar circumstances. Nevertheless, he has an affinity for mathematics and science and almost total recall of anything he has read, heard, or seen. Life with his father is relatively routine until Christopher finds a neighbor's dog that was killed with a garden tool. Because of his compulsion to solve puzzles and his fondness for Sherlock Holmes, Christopher sets out, against his father's objections, to find out who killed the dog, with unexpected repercussions. Haddon, who published 15 children's books before writing his first adult novel, captures without sentimentality the joy and pain of this unusual childhood. Just as remarkable as Christopher's story is the masterful performance by Jeff Woodman, whose voice and tone are totally convincing as those of a working-class English adolescent. Highly recommended for all collections.-Michael Adams, CUNY Graduate Ctr. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

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main characters Christopher John Francis Boone
Male
Age: 15
Autistic
Math genius; cannot stand to be touched; investigating the murder of his neighbor's dog.



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