The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. It is interesting to note that I have not really heard of this book until I was asked to assist one of my tutees with his book report.

This book has an interesting set of characters beginning with the main protagonist, Christopher John Francis Boone, a 15-year old boy who is mathematically gifted but has no understanding of human feelings and emotions. According to the reviews, Christopher’s seemingly special condition is not explicitly stated. Neither does the author delve into the issue of autism. But Christopher has displayed a lot of symptoms of being a special teen.

Nonetheless, he was able to solve the murder of his neighbor’s poodle, Wellington. But eventually finds out many vital things about his family, like his mother is not really dead but has run off with a neighbor’s husband; his father killed Wellington in a fit of anger with their neighbor whom he was having an affair. Christopher even managed to journey on his own to find his mother in London. In the end, Christopher’s mother returns to Swindon with her son and Christopher’s father gets to visit him to rebuild lost trust. Also, Christopher takes his A-level mathematics exam and aces it. The novel ends on a positive note with Christopher gaining self-confidence and even plans on eventually attending university.

In my opinion, it is an interesting novel. In fact, I would have liked to read it in detail. I sometimes can’t understand how most students of today find the pursuit of knowledge rather tedious and would rather rely on someone else helping them out with homework. It certainly was different in my time. Sure, we had less in terms of technology — no Internet to serve our research needs even when I was attending the University, but that didn’t stop us from learning all that we can. Just like the novel, I’d like to end on a positive note. I guess that if there aren’t any students needing guidance, then freelance tutors such as me would serve no purpose. At the end of the day, we do what we can with what we have. I’m just glad for the extra income. 😀

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