Tuesday, February 21, 2012

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

The Girl With the Dragon TattooThe Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Disgraced journalist Mikael Blomkvist is hired to solve the decades-old murder of Harriet Vanger, member of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden. Aided by a tattooed, antisocial hacker named Lisabeth Salander, Blomkvist unearths horrible skeletons lurking in the Vanger family closet...

For a few years now, I've been avoiding The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Since so many people told me I just had to read it, many of them non-readers, I assumed it was a lot of over-hyped, dumbed-down crap. Well, I may have been wrong. All hype, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a damn good book and I feel it goes beyond just being a mystery.

Larsson creates some memorable characters. We've got Mikael Blomkvist, the tarnished journalist, Lisabeth Salander, bad ass hacker, for the leads, both multi-dimensional characters. Neither are by any means perfect but I liked them just the same. The Vanger family and the staff of the Millennium aren't as well drawn as the leads but Ericka Berger and some of the Vangers are good characters in their own right.

I'll be honest. It took a little while for me to get moving but I was enthralled pretty early on. You wouldn't have thought I'd be that interesting in what could have been a tedious subject to read about, namely researching family archives for hints. Someone Larsson managed to grab me, though.

There isn't a lot of violence but what there is is pretty brutal. The hacking was pretty well done nad not completely unbelievable. I guess what really sold the book for me was that I really believed in the characters. Both of them are pretty flawed but completely believable.

I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a few minor complaints. Aside from the pace, I felt like Larsson threw in some needless details. I didn't need to know the brands of a lot of products or what the characters were eating. I also thought that Mikael Blomkvist being a sort of James Bond in regard to the ladies was a tad unbelievable. Honestly, those are my only two complaints.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo deserves a lot of the hype it gets. Now go out and read it if you haven't already!

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  1. I didn't see BLomkvist as a womanizer. Swedish society is different. Although it was weird, him having women fall at him . Then again Erica Berger and he are having a relationship and her husband knows and condones it.

  2. Glad you read this one, many times a book doesn't live up to the hype this one however totally does. I agree with the excessive details which was my only complaint with it and the other two in the series it could have used more editing but having said that still brilliant.

  3. I imagine the books would have been even better if Larsson hadn't died before he got a chance to edit them a bit.