Book: The curious incident of the dog in the night-time
Every time I read a book or an article about autism, I come away thinking I’m autistic. It’s all so familiar: the difficulty in social situations, the calm of being alone, the fascination with patterns. (Of course, whenever I read The Joy Luck Club, I think I’m Chinese, and whenever I read Watership Down, I think I’m a rabbit.)
Mark Haddon’s book was hot stuff when it came out, two years ago, but I’ve only just gotten around to reading it. (You don’t get around to bestsellers right away when you prefer checking them out at the library to buying them.) I thought it would be interesting to read a novel with a narrator who’s autistic and I wondered if the gimmick would live up to the hype.
Even if there were 50 other novels with autistic narrators, this would still be a really good book. The mystery aspect is compelling (even if the “murder” is solved halfway through) and Haddon pulls off the amazing trick of making you care more about the narrator than he does about himself. I was worried that some of the larger issues in the story wouldn’t be resolved by the end, but I came away very satisfied. The book is highly recommended (and short).
(Also, I have to add that I feel smug for knowing how to pronounce “Siobhan.”)