The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time

by Mark Haddon

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Why is the ending of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time satisfying?

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Not every part of the ending of The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time leaves the reader completely satisfied. By the end of the story, we have learned about the true nature of the strife between Christopher's parents and he finds out about his father's capability for violence and deception. However, there are still some elements of the ending that are satisfying to read.

First of all, Christopher reconnects with his mother. He had not heard from her in some time and was told that she was dead. At the very end of the story, he then sits for his A-level mathematics exam and receives the highest score possible. This allows Christopher to sit for further exams which he expects to pass with high marks. The novel ends with Christopher planning to leave for university somewhere else in England. He would previously have been incapable of such independence. However, his adventures in solving the murder of Wellington and his solo travel to London have given him confidence and taught him the skills he will need to start a more independent life.

In this sense, the ending is very satisfying. In a way, Christopher has experienced the hero's journey. An event has pulled him out of his ordinary life, and by undergoing trials and challenges he has grown and changed as a person. The reader feels good about what has happened to Christopher and can be satisfied with his personal growth in the face of adversity.

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