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''The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time'' (2003) is a novel by Mark Haddon. It is about young Christopher John Francis Boone, who knows all the countries of the world and all the prime numbers up to 7,057, but has almost no comprehension of human emotion.

One late night (exactly 7 minutes after midnight), he finds his neighbor's dog killed by a garden fork, leading him into an investigation that becomes about more than just a dead dog, but about the real world told through the eyes of a 15-year-old with severe autism, right down to the unnecessary details.

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!!''The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time'' contains examples of:

* AbusiveParents: It's mentioned that Christopher's mother hit him a few times as a kid simply because she didn't know how to deal with him. She did feel remorse though, and it's part of the reason she felt she wasn't a good enough mother for him.
** Christopher's father also.
* AlternateCharacterInterpretation: In-universe. To most people, killing Wellington would be a pretty disgusting KickTheDog (no pun intended) moment but not quite the MoralEventHorizon. To Christopher, it is as serious as killing a human being and [[spoiler:his father is a murderer and Christopher must escape from the house because his father could kill anyone.]]
** As discussed below, it's commonly believed that Christopher has AspergerSyndrome but he actually shows lots of signs of being much lower down on the spectrum such as wetting himself and acting years younger than his actual age a lot.
* AmbiguousDisorder: While Christopher is clearly meant to be somewhere on the autistic spectrum, it never says in the novel what exactly he is diagnosed with, if anything, though it could be...
* AspergerSyndrome: The blurb of more recent editions of the book states he has Asperger's, although looking at the other students in his school as well as other indicators (such as attacking people who touch him), he may in fact have [[UsefulNotes/HighFunctioningAutism a more severe form of autism]] and ExecutiveMeddling later changed it to Asperger's to make it easier for readers to empathise with him.
** Haddon himself actually states that he never made the book specifically about someone on the autistic spectrum, but rather about someone who was an "outsider".
** People who are actually autistic-spectrum tend to react poorly to the idea that Christopher is supposed to be anything like them.
* BreadEggsBreadedEggs: Christopher says his favorite subjects are mathematics, physics and mathematical physics.
* BrownNote: Christopher ''hates'' the colours yellow and brown, especially yellow. He also despises loud noises, which cause him to scream and cover his ears.
* BumblingDad: Christopher's dad isn't always the best father, but he at least tries to own up to his mistakes and it's clear he loves his son very much.
* CannotTellAJoke: Christopher doesn't understand humour very well because he is so LiteralMinded.
* CannotTellALie: Christopher refuses to outright lie, ever (though over the course of the story he becomes more comfortable telling ''white'' lies).
* CaptainObvious: Christopher, for obvious [[UsefulNotes/AspergerSyndrome reasons.]]
* ClusterFBomb / PrecisionFStrike: Lots of them.
* {{Cloudcuckoolander}}: Chris. Justified because of his autism.
* ConversationalTroping: Christopher often muses about what we would recognize as tropes to himself, and why they're [[DiscreditedTrope unrealistic]]. In one chapter he notes how silly the idea of HumanoidAliens is, and instead thinks they would be more likely to be [[StarfishAliens totally different]]. In another, he notices some people dressed as HornyVikings and comments on how anachronistic their clothing is.
* CursedWithAwesome / BlessedWithSuck: Christopher is a mathematical genius but his social skills are in the negatives.
* DeadpanSnarker: Christopher claims to have no sense of humour but is given to moments of dry, sardonic wit, an example being: "I think dogs are more interesting than some people. Francis who goes to be school for instance needs help to eat his food and could not even fetch a stick. Siobhan tells me not to say this to Francis's mother."
** Though considering how LiteralMinded he is, an AlternateCharacterInterpretation of this is that he is TheComicallySerious. He might genuinely not understand the humor in that, and what he says is only coincidentally funny.
* {{Deconstruction}}: Of the {{Kid Detective}} genre of books. It shows what kind of person would be stupid enough to go out of their way to search for clues about a 'murder' in a world dictated by reality, all for the sake of wanting to being a detective. In fact, [[spoiler: The 'investigation' comes to a screeching halt less than halfway through the story because clues don't just fall into your lap]]
* DepartmentOfRedundancyDepartment: When adults don't understand what he's saying, Christopher tends to just repeat himself word for word.
* DirectLineToTheAuthor: In-universe, Christopher is the author of the book.
* DoesNotKnowHisOwnStrength: Christoper is very strong and doesn't realise he has to be careful at times.
* EvolutionaryLevels: Christopher ponders this trope at one point and dismisses it, saying that humans aren't the pinnacle of evolution but just one successful species out of many that have existed, and will probably go extinct in the future and be replaced by something else.
* FelonyMisdemeanor:
** It outrages Christopher that after he finds out that [[spoiler:his father]] killed Wellington, they won't even get punished for it because they'll only do it if Mrs. Shears presses charges.
** [[InvertedTrope It fits curiously with the attitude of people towards Christopher himself]] - quite innocuous deeds like coloring his food red and loving maths and science [[spoiler: infuriated his own mother so greatly [[DisproportionateRetribution she left her family for her married neighbor]]]]. The boy didn't bully, steal, do drugs, make poorly in school; he was even unable to tell a lie.
* FreakOut: Christopher gets overwhelmed easily by loud noises, physical contact and bright lights.
* GenreSavvy: Christopher often refers to DetectiveFiction tropes as a model for how he should investigate the crime.
** [[spoiler: {{Wrong Genre Savvy}}: The difference is that he isn't living inside a detective novel.]]
* HalfTruth: Chris's father on Chris's mother:
-->'''Father:''' She has a problem... a problem with her heart.
* HardOnSoftScience: Despite Christopher having almost NoSenseOfHumour, he does enjoy one joke about inductive reasoning, because it shows a mathematician showing up an economist, and as he puts it, "economists aren't real scientists".
* HatesBeingTouched: Christopher hates it so much that he reacts violently whenever anyone touches him, even his own parents. Instead of hugging him, they touch their fingertips to his when they want to show affection.
* HeroicBSOD: Christopher goes nearly catatonic when he finds out [[spoiler: his father was the one who killed Wellington, and hid from him that his mother is not dead but merely abandoned them]].
* HyperAwareness: The reason Christopher says he doesn't like new places or people: he has no filters and can't help but notice every little detail about the environment around him, down to the smell of a policeman's aftershave and the vents in his teacher's shoes. It doesn't help that he has a self-described PhotographicMemory.
* INeedAFreakingDrink: Ed does this a couple of times.
* INeverGotAnyLetters: [[spoiler: Ed is hiding letters from Christopher.]]
* IdiotSavant: Christopher.
* InnocentInaccurate: Christopher.
* ItsAllAboutMe: Christopher, his mother and Mr and Mrs. Shears.
* JerkWithAHeartOfGold: Chris, although you can't really blame him. Also, Chris's parents.
* KidDetective / AmateurSleuth: What Chris wishes to become.
* LiesToChildren: So, Ed, how's that whole [[spoiler: pretending-your-wife-is-dead]] thing working out for your kid, eh?
* LiteraryAllusionTitle: ''Silver Blaze'', a SherlockHolmes mystery (full quote at FairPlayWhodunnit).
* MissingMom: Christopher is raised by his father because his mother has died. [[spoiler:Or so he's been told. She is actually living elsewhere.]]
* MysteryWriterDetective: Christopher is writing his book as he works on the mystery of who killed Wellington.
* NerdGlasses: Christopher mentions wearing glasses a few times.
* NoSocialSkills: Christopher.
* NotUsingTheZWord: Christopher is never identified as being anywhere on the autistic spectrum in the book. Haddon himself maintains that he wrote the character as an "outsider" more than anything else.
* ParentsAsPeople: To the point were it might as well be called "parents as people, the book".
* PickyEater: Chris, a trait of his ASD. He refuses to eat any food that has touched a different kind of food on his plate, and keeps a bottle of food colouring in the kitchen for yellow foods (his least favorite colour).
* PunchAWall: Ed punches a hole in a fence when Christopher won't talk to him.
* TheRainman: Christopher is a classic example of the "autistic savant" trope: brilliant at math, poor at communicating, a CreatureOfHabit.
* ReadingYourRights: Christopher gets this from the cop at the beginning, which he recognizes as standard procedure.
* ScheduleFanatic: Chris. He plans his daily routine down to the minute and gets upset when he isn't sure what time it is.
* ShoutOut: Christopher is a big fan of ScienceFiction and mentions several franchises he likes, including ''StarTrek'', ''StarWars'', ''DoctorWho'', ''Series/BlakesSeven'' and ''Film/BladeRunner''. He also talks about Literature/SherlockHolmes at length, who is his chief inspiration as a KidDetective, in fact the title is a line from "Silver Blaze" (''The Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes").
* SirSwearsALot: Christopher's father, to the point where some of his lines resemble a ClusterFBomb.
* SuperOCD: Christopher gets very upset when anything in his house is changed and goes as far as measuring where the furniture is so he can put it back in the right places after his mother vacuums. He likes Mrs. Shears because she's very neat and organizes everything in the kitchen.
* TrademarkFavoriteFood: Christopher ''loves'' strawberry milkshakes and mentions them several times in the book. He's also fond of Indian food.
* TroubledFetalPosition: Christopher does this when he is upset or overwhelmed.
* UnusualChapterNumbers: The chapter numbers are all prime numbers, which Christopher has a love for.
* UnreliableNarrator: Despite his PhotographicMemory. May be related to InnocentInaccurate.
* WhamLine: [[spoiler: "I killed Wellington, Christopher."]]
* WouldHitAGirl: Christopher once punched a girl who was bullying him so hard that he knocked her out and she had to be taken to hospital with concussion.
* WriteWhoYouKnow: Mark Haddon worked with autistics when he was younger and mentions that he based Christopher on two specific people he knew.
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