31 Down, 21 Left (52 Weeks, 52 Books)

Asperger’s Syndrome is characterized by deficiencies in social and communication skills, normal to above normal intelligence, and standard language development. Which pretty much describes our hero, Christopher, in The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time. He has perfect recall, above average mathematics ability, cannot relate to other people in a normal, emotional way, and will curl up screaming in the foetal position if touched unwillingly. Your average Rain Man, really. Or Data.

In any case, the book is written from the perspective of Christopher, as he obsessively documents the events leading from his discovery of his neighbour’s murdered dog. As we’re looking at things through Christopher’s eyes, your regular gumshoe murder mystery takes on a novel bent. Despite having never ventured beyond the end of his street on his own, events compel Christopher to make his way to London, his personal difficulties making the relatively simple train trip into quite the ordeal.

Quite a lovely book, and genuinely heartbreaking at some parts. A plus is that its loaded with puzzle illustrations as Christopher resorts to maths when he’s feeling stressed or nervous. Most were beyond me though.

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time
(ISBN No: 0099450259) Check NLB Catalogue for item availability.

My next book will be The Skrayling Tree by Michael Moorcock.


3 Responses to “31 Down, 21 Left (52 Weeks, 52 Books)”

  1. 1 airhole August 6, 2006 at 18:17

    heart wrenching to say the least… finally, one book i have read.. that you have reviewed!

  2. 2 billy August 6, 2006 at 21:35

    recommend me leh. i need to go library for my next book tomorrow.

  3. 3 oska August 26, 2006 at 19:56

    Sorry, but I’ve read this book and think that’s it’s very over-rated. Kind of like ‘To kill a mocking-bird’ another very over-rated book. Sentimentalism dressed up as empathy,an unusual title and a theme that hits a major topic of the zeitgeist seems to do wonders for lacklustre mediocre writing such as this.

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