Autism Awareness Blog Hop: Review & Giveaway of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

I’m recycling this review in honor of the Autism Awareness Giveaway Hop. I wrote it at least two years ago, back in the days of my newspaper review column and just after reading this lovely story for the second time.


The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time has had a profound influence on my own writing. Its protagonist Christopher has stuck by my side and in my brain ever since I first read about him. The author does a brilliant job of writing inside this autistic character’s viewpoint. I loved how Chris was still portrayed as heroic and brave despite his perceived disability. In fact, it had a lot to do with my choice to debut as the author of a novel featuring the first person POV of a blind protagonist. Like Chris, the author was brave enough to celebrate an unlikely hero, and for that, I will always think the world of him. Scroll down for my full review, and don’t forget to enter the international giveaway for a paperback copy of this wonderful novel!



Preview…If you’re looking for a read that can be completed in a single sitting or can be put down and resumed at will, then, reader, meet Mark Haddon’s “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time”. What makes this book fantastic is not intriguing plot twists or award-winning prose, but rather the character study of its narrator. Christopher Boone is a 15-year-old with autism. He views the world differently from you or me. Christopher derives comfort from logic, order and mathematics, while being touched, seeing too many yellow cars or meeting new people can be monumentally challenging.

Our hero begins writing his own book (this book) at the urging of his school teacher. One evening, he finds his neighbor’s standard poodle lying in the street, pierced clean through with a garden pitchfork. Needing to know the circumstances surrounding the dog’s death, so that he himself may feel safe, he puts on his detective hat and works toward solving the mystery of who killed Wellington? Christopher must draw on unknown stores of bravery as he interviews his neighbors in regards to the crime

During his investigations, he unwittingly stumbles upon an even bigger mystery. His mother, who presumably died of a heart attack two years prior, may still be alive. He and his pet rat, Toby, embark on a journey to find her, one that takes him far away from the world he knows. He gets into trouble at a few points and must escape a persistent police escort, a train headed straight at him as he rescues his rat from the rails, and a mind-dizzying array of advertisements that just cannot be ignored.

How will a boy who thrives on order and fears the unknown make his journey safely? What really happened with his mother, and why had his father lied to him all of this time? Even more interestingly, what are Christopher’s quirks that help get him through the day successfully? How would he view a situation differently than someone else might? What does our hero make of the shocking answers to these mysteries? The answers are worth finding out, if you have an afternoon, or a few snatches of time here and there, to spare.

You may like this book if…you know someone with autism or a similar disorder; you enjoy mathematical puzzles; you enjoy a nontraditional hero; you are interested in the strain placed on caregivers; you like dissecting and contrasting logic from emotionality; you really like dogs and need to understand the “curious incident”; you want to read a book that is empowering for people with disabilities; you’d like a quick and easy read

You may not like this book if… you prefer an exciting plot to an unforgettable character; you have a hard time relating to a character who shows very little emotion; you don’t want to know how every signpost or advert Christopher saw looked; you don’t appreciate random digressions; you really like yellow or brown or drive a car that is yellow or brown.

Want to win a copy of this amazing book?

*open internationally*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Visit the rest of the blog hoppers


Over 75 participating blogs are hosting giveaways.  You will find lots of variety among the prizes.  Some of the blogs are offering prizes that relate to autism, others are giving away gift cards or other prizes and posting information about autism to help make others aware.

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  1. +JMJ+

    Thanks for the giveaway! The only book I think I want to win more than this one is Farsighted. 😉 I’m not just being cute, either; I mean it!

  2. Hi Em,

    I read this book last year – fantastic. Mark really captures the essence of autism. It was given to me by a friend of mine who works with people who have mental and physical disabilities. Highly recommend.


  3. This one has been on my wishlist ever since one of my teachers told us about it in class – it sounds a little bit like Kathryn Erskine’s Mockingbird, which I totally enjoyed. I’m sure it’s a great read!

  4. Thank you for the giveaway! It’s rather difficult for the most people to truly understand people who have autism, but I think Mark Haddon is one of those who can.

  5. Thanks so much for making it internationally!

  6. Thanks for the giveaway. I’ve been wanting to read this book for awhile now.

  7. Thanks for the giveaway !!!

  8. Aik

    Thanks for this giveaway! Please visit my blog for YA book reviews and more!

  9. Thanks for the giveaway!

  10. Thanks for the giveaway! :)

  11. Thanks for the giveaway.

  12. Wow.. I had never heard of this book, now I can not wait to get my hands on it. If I don’t win it I am going to have to but it. Thank you so much Em for being a part of this blog hop and helping to support Autism Awareness. <#

  13. Hi Emlyn,

    What a wondeful book! Sounds like one for me, so I just had to enter! Here is my post requirment and happy Autism Awareness blog hopping!


  14. I feel like this blog hop is very important. We need to teach people more about autism.
    Thank you for the oppurtunity to win

  15. My son is autistic, and I think he would love this book. Thanks so much!

  16. Thank you for the giveaway. I am really curious to read this book :)

  17. I’ve been seeing that book popup throughout this blog hop and I would love to read it since the title sounds so interesting!

    Lilian @ A Novel Toybox

  18. Thanks for the international giveaway!!

  19. Sounds like a great book! Thanks for promoting autism awareness and the giveaway!


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