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Sunday, October 22, 2006


I can walk to the library, the train, the post office, the drugstore, the diner - I can even walk to a waterfall. But most days I find myself getting into the car, even though the destination is rarely more than twenty minutes away. So I like to have something to listen to. Those "twenty minuteses" add up, and you can read/listen to a lot of books in the course of a year. Not all books work well for me in audio format. But this one was a winner.

I never read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time when it was new (2003, I think). I enjoyed it so much that I found myself manufacturing errands just so I could continue to listen. Michiko Kakutani, on the jacket blurb, wrote " to get an idea of what Mark Haddon's moving new novel is like, think of The Sound and the Fury crossed with The Catcher in the Rye and one of Oliver Sacks' real life stories". That's a start. Christopher Boone, the narrator, is a teenage savant/math whiz with Asperger's Syndrome. He finds a neighbor's dog stabbed by a garden fork, and sets out to find the murderer and write a book about it a la Sherlock Holmes, whom he admires. It's funny, sad, moving, surprising, educational. At the supermarket I found myself wondering, a la Christopher, whether I qualified for the "12 items or less aisle" with my 3 rolls of toilet paper (1 item or 3?) and 2 Anjou pears (1 item or 2?). Highly recommended.

And now it's back to the language tapes which will do fine til I can get to the library and get another "book" - tomorrow, most likely.


Anonymous beecher said...

This book sounds good...but I'll probably just have to read it. I don't know why, but I have never yet been able to enjoy a book on tape. What's wrong with me???

10:42 PM  
Blogger sixty-five said...

You would for sure like it in some form. In this case, the narrator was so good it actually made the book even better. But I've had the opposite experience. Best books to listen to are simple, straighforward ones: memoirs, foodie books, books with a lot of dialog...

11:26 PM  

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