Study Guide

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time Chapter 79

By Mark Haddon

Chapter 79

  • Back in the present, Christopher gets home from his investigative word and his father is sitting at the kitchen table.
  • Christopher has to tell a "white lie": he says he's been "out" (79.3).
  • Unfortunately, his cover is blown: Mrs. Shears just called and told him that Christopher was snooping around in her yard again.
  • His dad pretty angry, since he specifically told Christopher "to keep [his] nose out of other people's business" (79.10) – obviously this doesn't include poking around someone else's property.
  • Christopher tries to reason with him – after all, Mr. Shears is his Prime Suspect. This doesn't go over very well with Dad: he totally flips out, banging the table and yelling that he never wants to hear Mr. Shears' name mentioned in his house. That guy is evil.
  • Yikes.
  • Christopher says he knows he shouldn't mess around in other people's business, but Mrs. Shears is a friend.
  • Not anymore, his father tells him. And anyway, Dad is really losing his patience at this point, so he very specifically tells Christopher a few things he's not allowed to do: namely, go around asking people about the dog, and anything involving "this ridiculous bloody detective game" (79.23).
  • His father makes him promise. So promise, he does.