"You Go Around Raking Up the Past and Sharing It with Every Tom, Dick and Harry." ‘Mired in His Own Self-Interest, Christopher's Father Ultimately Fails to Understand His Son.' Do You Agree?

Topics: The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time, Exclusive Books Boeke Prize, Truth Pages: 3 (1017 words) Published: May 25, 2007
In The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time, Mr Boone's reaction to Christopher's disability is a complex one that shows he can only ever partially understand his son. Mr Boone seemingly does act from his own self-interest when he demands that Christopher stops investigating the murder of Wellington, for this would rake up past behaviour that he wants to hide from him. However, he wants both to protect himself from gossip, and to protect Christopher from the harsh realities of life. Questions of self-interest and understanding, therefore, are not clear cut because Mr Boone does also act in Christopher's best interest.

In caring for Christopher, Mr Boone demonstrates that he is not motivated solely by self-interest and that he does understand Christopher. Most notably, Mr. Boone has done everything in his power to ensure that Christopher is not only happy, but that his talents a fulfilled. Specifically, he did all he could to ensure that Christopher was able to sit his A-level maths test and goes to the effort of ensuring that all of Christopher's food is prepared in a fashion that is acceptable to Christopher, that is; it is not yellow, but red- Christopher's favourite colour. One can also sympathise with Mr. Boone, it is obviously very difficult to care for Christopher's particular needs. This however, isn't to say that Mr. Boone is a saint, with only his son's best interests at heart.

Mr Boone is only human, and at times he is motivated by self-interest. Soon after his wife leaves him and abandons Christopher, Mr. Boone pursues a relationship with their next-door neighbour Mrs. Shears, acting out of selfishness and a simple desire to be loved. It is clear that perhaps Ed Boone's compassion towards Mrs. Shears overshadows the real problem at hand; that is, whether or not, he should tell Christopher the truth about his mother's affair. Christopher Boone has a very simplistic view regarding truth and lies; he simply doesn't understand lies, ‘can't...
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