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The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time

Main Ideas

Point of View

Main Ideas Point of View

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time is written in the first-person point of view. Christopher Boone acts as both the protagonist and the narrator of the novel, meaning the reader experiences the story from his point of view. The novel is organized as a written account of Wellington’s murder and Christopher’s subsequent investigation. Christopher is highly intelligent and especially good at mathematics and logic puzzles, but he goes to a “special school” because of emotional and behavioral problems, and his unique developmental disorder shapes the narration. Because Christopher has a nearly perfect, photographic memory, he can recount the details from his life in full, vivid detail. He contemplates his experiences and observations with savant-like judgment, and this emotionless logic gives the text its detached, matter-of-fact tone. For example, after he learns that his mother had an affair with Mr. Shears, Christopher says, “I don’t feel sad about it. Because Mother is dead...So I would be feeling sad about something that isn’t real and doesn’t exist. And that would be stupid.” The wide gap between his intellectual and emotional intelligence often creates dramatic irony, in which the reader understands something that Christopher does not. For example, the reader learns early in the novel that Mrs. Shears often came over to his house, cooked Christopher and his father dinner, and spent the night. While the reader understands that Christopher’s father and Mrs. Shears were romantically involved, this reality evades Christopher. From Christopher’s perspective, complex mathematical equations are easy to understand, but routines of everyday life are confounding mysteries.