? The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon is set in England in the 1990s. It is a story of Asperger syndrome awareness. Mark Haddon becomes his character Christophe John Francis Boone in this story showing the intelligence of a boy who never gave up and knew he could achieve anything he wished. It opens with its narrator and writer Christopher Boone telling us about his neighbours dead poodle Wellington. Christopher is a smart boy who lives in Swindon, England with his father because his mother died of a heart attack. He tells us that he knows all the countries of the world and their capital cities as well as all the prime numbers up to 7 507 — an odd piece of knowledge for a 15 year old boy. It is obvious from the beginning of the story that Christopher is not a normal boy. He has trouble understanding human emotions, but gets along very well with animals.
In the opening paragraph, Christopher tells us of his neighbours dog that been stabbed with a garden fork in the backyard of its home. Christopher removes the fork from the dog and picks it up to hug it. He explains that the dog is easier to understand because it only has four moods. Mrs.Shears, Wellingtons owner, comes out of her home and runs toward Christopher asking him what he has done to her dog. Christopher introduces his book as a murder mystery novel.
Christopher is writing this book about the mystery of Wellingtons death. When the police arrive at the scene of the crime, Christopher is brought into questioning for the murder of Wellington. Christopher has trouble answering these questions and the police officer grabs him and Christopher quickly hits him because he is unable to understand the situation. The police officer then arrests him. The two drive down to the police station and in his narration Christopher mentions the Milky Way — one of his many references to space and astronomy. When they arrive at the police station, Christopher is told to remove his laces and empty his pockets. Christopher always gives too much detail and he is very precise. After the police contact his father, he is moved into a jail cell.
At 1:12 AM, Christophers father shows up at the station to retrieve him. Christopher is given a caution and is allowed to leave for home. The next morning, Christopher makes another reference to the Milky Way. The conflict is revealed when Christopher decides he is going to figure out who killed Wellington.
It is Christopher against everything that stands in his way of figuring out his case. Christophers father becomes impatient with him for wanting to figure out the murderer and this happens a couple of times during the book. When Christopher goes to check on his father hours later, he is crying in front of the television. Christopher speaks of his mothers death two years before.
His father told him he wouldnt be seeing her for a while. He explained to Christopher that she is in the hospital because she has a bad heart. Christophers mother died two weeks later after being in the hospital, but Christopher never seen her. Then Christopher starts seeing Mrs. Shears come around to help make dinner and comfort his father, Ed. In chapter 11, which is acutally the fifth chapter, Christopher releases his theory of a good day and bad day: 4 red cars mean a good day, 3 red cars means quite a good day, 5 red cars means a super good day and 4 yellow cars mean a black day. On black days, Christopher will not eat his lunch or speak to anyone.
Later, Christopher decides to go to Mrs.Shears home to ask her questions about Wellington. She tells him to leave and he realizes he is on his own to figure out the mystery. When no one is looking, Christopher goes into Mrs.Shears backyard. Mrs.
Shears soon finds Christopher and threatens to call the cops a second time, so he leaves to go back home. On the Saturday, Christopher decides to do more detective work. He decides to ask his other neighbours if they seen anyone around, but these people are strangers. Christopher does not get along too well with strangers — it takes him weeks to become comfortable and for him to say the first word. The first neighbour was of no help. The second stranger told Christopher to ask his father about who would want to make Mrs.Shears sad.
This leads us, the readers, to think that there may be a link between Mrs.Shears helping around the house, comforting Christophers father and his mothers death. After talking to a couple more neighbours, Christopher concludes that Mr.Shears is the prime suspect. Mr.
and Mrs.Shears used to live together but they broke up two years ago — Christophers mother died two years ago. Christopher tells us that this is the reason why Mrs.
Shears is always at the house because she was upset that she didnt have anyone to cook for. Christopher tells us that sometimes Mrs.Shears would stay overnight with his father. The reader obviously now sees a connection between the death of Christophers mother and the disappearance of Mr.Shears. Christopher now focuses on telling us of his achievements in school. In a month, he plans on taking his A-level math exam. Christopher also tells us that he is in a Special Needs school — even though he says he is not stupid.
Christopher hopes to grow up to get a degree in math or physics — or both. Christoper turns his thoughts to his parents relationship. He says that they used to fight all the time and he thought they would get a divorce. Christophers behavioral problems made them argue most of the time. His mother told him that he was going to drive her to an early grave — which is kind of ironic. Ed confronts Christopher about him exploring Mrs.Shears garden and Christopher reveals that Mr.Shears is his prime suspect.
Christophers father becomes angry when he hears his name and slams his fist down onto the table, scaring Christopher. Ed tells him that Mr.Shears is an evil man. Ed makes Christopher promise that he will not do anymore investigating whatsoever to find out who killed Wellington. Christopher agrees.
Christopher tells us that he has aspirations to become an astronaut because he is intelligent and he can understand how machines work. He also likes being alone. There wouldnt be any yellow or brown things — which Christopher is very scared of.
He tells us that sometime he lats out in the grass look at the sky and blocks out all views of the earth. He tells us that becoming an astronaut is his biggest dream. Since Christopher wasnt allowed to do any more detective work he turned his book into the school, but he didnt consider it a book because it wasnt finished and he hadnt figured out who killed Wellington. Then Christopher seen four yellow cars in a row on his way to school for two days.
So he went to school with his eyes closed. Luckily, five days later Christopher fouvd five red cars in a row on his way to school which meant a super good day. On his way home from school he spots Mrs.Alexander, a neighbour who helped him conclude his prime suspect. He talks to Mrs.Alexander even though she is a stranger because she might have something to say to help him with his detective work. After many questions from Christopher, Mrs.
Alexander tells him that his mother and Mr.Shears were very,very good friends which is why Mr and Mrs.Shears arent together anymore.
Christopher begins to feel uncomfortable so he leaves and goes home. Christopher wrote his recent discovery as a new part to his book and brought it into school the next day. His teacher Siobhan read the story and assured him that he could always go to her if he felt uncomfortable about anything. Christopher describes his memory as a smell and sound track that he could rewind, fast forward and pause. Christopher goes back to a memory of his mother when he was nine and they went swimming together. He was very scared of the water — he thought there were sharks in the water. He doesnt remember anything from before he was 4 because he couldnt think right, he says. The next day, Christopher got home from school and his father wasnt home from work at this point.
He turned on an educational movie about the ocean as he ate his after-school snack. When Christophers father returned home from work he finds Christophers book — this does not make him happy. Christopher tries to explain that Mrs.
Alexander told him, but Christopher didnt ask about it exactly. Ed grabs his arm and Christopher is unable to process these situations and hits his father. Then his father continues to yell at him and Christopher hits his father a second time.
Now Christophe says his memories have disappeared. When he awakes, he sees his father breathing heavily standing and Christopher is on the floor bleeding and the side of his head is paining. His father opened the door to leave the house and Christopher heard the garbage bin open and something drop.
When he entered the room, he no longer held Christophers story. The next day, Ed apologized to Christopher for losing his temper and he takes him to the zoo for the day. He reassures him over dinner that he is sorry and that he loves him very much, but Christopher doesnt understand. On Monday, Christopher got home before his father once agin.
Christopher decided to look for his book — it wasnt in the garbage bin. Christopher decided that the book must be in the house. Christopher searches all over until the last place to look is his fathers room. Christopher looks in his fathers clothes cupboard where he finds a toolbox. Under the toolbox is a shirt box.
Inside the shirtbox is Christophers book. Then Ed pulls into the driveway. Christopher puts everything beack where it belongs, but he soon finds a letter in the box addressed to himself. He took the letter and brings it to his room. Christopher goes back to his room after supper to open the envelope. Inside was a letter from his mother! The had no date and Christopher knew his mother never lived in London so he wondered if someone was pretending to be his mother.
The front of the envelope had a postmark date on it for October 16, 1997 — 18 months after his mothers supposed death. Christopher concludes that he now has two mysteries to solve. There were six days between the first and second time Christopher went to his fathers cupboard.
Christopher found forty-three letters addressed to himself ensuring that indeed the letters must be from his mother. She spoke of the good times they had together and her life in London. She explained why she left, saying she didnt have the patience and then she started spending time with Roger. Roger is Mr.Shears. After the fourth letter, Christopher realized that his mother was not dead — she has been alice the whole time. Christopher curled into a ball.
This is the climax of the story. Later, Ed returned home to find Christopher on his bedroom floor with the letters all around him. Christopher went numb and didnt react to anything his father told him. Ed tells him he did it for his own good and that he was confused and didnt know how to deal with it. He runs Christopher a bath and walks him to the bathroom. Christopher has yet to say a word. His father dried him off and took him back to his room. Christopher still gave no response.
Then Ed sighs and tells Christopher that he killed Wellington. At first, Christopher thought it was a joke although he has a hard time understanding them.Ed explains to Christoper that Eileen, Mrs.Shears, was very good to him when his mother left.
As it turns out, Ed and Eileen didnt get along as well as Ed had thought. He knew that Mrs.Shears loved her dog more than himself and Christopher. So he killed him. Ed left the room. Christopher was still numb.
He now thought his father would kill kim next. So he found his Swiss army knife just incase. Christopher went downstairs later after he was certain that his father was asleep. Christopher left his house with his pet rat and his food box.
He fell asleep behind his shed at 3:47 AM. In the morning, Christopher heard his father call to him and he hid himself the best he could from sight. Christopher decided the best place for him to go to from his father would be to find his mother. Christopher takes food for himself and Toby and his fathers bank card and leaves for the train station. Christopher confronts his fear of strangers and asks an older woman for directions to the train station. He enters the station and goes to the ticket booth. He buys a one-way ticket to London and gets on the train.
Then a policeman yells to Christopher telling him his father is at the station waiting for him, but Christopher refused to get off the train. As the train began to move, the policeman would be stuck for the ride. The two sat down. Christopher got up to use the bathroom. When he arrived, he realized he could easily hide in the cupboards in the bathroom — so he did.
When the policeman went to look from him he saw that Christopher was gone. Christopher stayed there until he felt confident that he would be safe. He noticed a policeman looking under the seats of the train so he got off the train. Christopher approached a woman who told him that he was in London.
She sent him on his way in the direction of his mothers home. Christopher took a tunnel to Willesden Junction.Chr Christopher decided to take a 5 hour break and sit on a bench. When he got up he went to look for Toby, who had ran off. When he went to look for Toby he ended up in the track for the train. As a train approached Christopher was lucky that a man pulled him and Toby up onto the concrete and saved them.
Christopher got onto the next train. Luckily it was stopping in Willesden Junction. Christopher bought a map off of a vender. He began to walk in random directions, hoping for the best. Finally he heard lady voices approaching, one of which he knew belonged to his mother! He greeted his mother who threw her arms around him and Christopher immediately pushed her off of him. He told his mother what was going on and that he was on his own in London. A policeman knocked on Christophers mothers door looking for him and asking if it was alright if he stayed with his mother. Since it was alright, the police officer didnt bother them any longer.
Christopher happily went to sleep, but was awoken when he heard yelling coming from the downstairs — it was his father and his mother. They were fighting over Christopher. Ed entered Christophers room and tried to get him to talk to him, but Christopher was frightened and held his swiss army knife close incase his father tried to grab him. Christophers mother told him everything was alright and he could go back to bed. so he did. That night, Christopher had the most amazing dream. In his dream, everyone on earth was dead because they caught a virus.
When people have the virus they dont eat or sleep they just sit in front of their televisions. The only people that survive are people like Christopher — people who dont understand human emotions. In his dream, he can basically do whatever he wants but he is never touched by anyone.
The next morning, Christopher tells his mother that he has to go back to Swindon to write his A-level math exam and she has to go with him. His mother told him it would be ridiculous and that it was too much to even think of that at this time. Christopher wanted to know if it would be a good day, so he looked out the window to find 5 red cars in a row and 4 yellow cars in a row. He then decided that his system didnt work anymore.
That night while Christopher was asleep, Roger Shears entered his room and awoke him. Roger was drunk and he told him that he must have thought he was clever showing up and expecting everything to go back to normal with his mother. In the morning, Roger left for work and Christophers mother told Christopher that she would be taking the car back to Swindon. She said that if Christopher stayed that someone would get hurt and it wouldnt be Christopher. When they arrived at Eds home in Swindon, Christopher went directly upstairs to his room and put his bed up against the door to hide from his father.
When Ed arrived home he began to fight with Christophers mother. The next morning, Christophers mother drove him to school and asked if he would be able to write his A-level exam. Christopher wrote his exam.
The next night, Mr.Shears showed up in a taxi with a cardboard box of Christophers things. Days later, Ed wanted a word with Christopher a short five minutes was all he wanted. After Ed talked to his son, he brought out a box. Inside was a small golden retriever, which Christopher named Sandy.
Christopher got his mark back for his exam and he received an A grade — the best possible grade. The next day, Christopher went to the book store with his mother and bought a book called Further Maths for A Level and Christopher plans of receiving an A grade in this course and physics. He tells us that he plans on becoming a scientist. He tells us he knows all of this because he went to London by himself and because he solved the mystery of who killed Wellington — which means he can do anything. The theme of the Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is Aspegers Sydnrome.
Aspergers sydrome is a type of autism where the individual is very antisocial and doesnt like to be touched. Clumsiness and repetitive movement is also very common in patients. Mark Haddon did an exellent job of becoming the character as he showed us what it is like to be in the mind of one of these individuals.