REVIEW The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo: Stieg Larsson


Another book that I’m the last person in the world to read. I really should make a feature of it. Anyways, I loved the book, and I really want to read the other two books.

Mikael “Kalle” Blomkvist has just lost a court case against a powerful Swedish magnate and faces 3 months in prison. He is hired by an influential old businessman, Henrik Wagner, to find out what happened to his granddaughter Harriet, who went missing from their home on an island 40 years ago. Blomkvist’s investigation involves detailed research into the Vanger family, with their plethora of relations. During the course of his investigation, he teams up with Lisbeth Salander, an asocial punk hacker working with a security company, who had conducted a more-than-thorough background investigation on him. Blomkvist and Salander uncover hidden information in decades-old evidence, which leads them to believe that the case is far more convoluted than they were originally led to believe.

The book starts off with Blomkvist being charged for printing libelous stories, and through that, we get a really clear look at all the ugly machinations behind a huge corporation. It is really interesting and Larsson uses his journalist background to provide all the juicy details. The mystery is introduced slowly, but grabs your attention with the detailing. You are as hooked as the reluctant Blomkvist, by the sprawling Vanger clan and their deeds over the past century. But where the book gets really interesting is when Blomkvist meets Salander. Initially, both their stories run parallelly, and honestly, I was more interested in Salander’s. She is a very interesting, complicated character with a twisted sense of justice, and there are many hints to her being molested as a kid. Salander’s razor-sharp brain, her disregard for authority and her thoughts and actions are the core of this book. I especially loved what she pulled off at the end, a masterstroke.

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a classic “locked room with suspects” mystery. I’ve read so many books and still I’m never tired of this genre. In Larsson’s case, it is not just a mystery, but also a commentary on Swedish society. The rules of guardianship (which struck me as quite bizarre), the underhand dealing, the skeletons in the family cupboards; Larsson brings all this and more into a scintillating story. Read this book, I’m sure you’ll love it as much as I did.

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13 Responses
  1. Shweta Says:

    I agree an awesome book. I pulled an all nighter to finish this book..I have it's sequel but yet to read..

  2. Tea Says:

    I want to read this one too. Great review.

  3. bermudaonion Says:

    Well, you aren't the last person to read this book because I haven't read it and I got it for Christmas of 2008, so I have no excuse! I need to make the time to read it.

  4. Josette Says:

    Haha! You are not the last person in the world to read this, there's still me. :) So it's kind of like a thriller novel eh? I've seen it on bestseller lists on Amazon - I guess it has to be good.

  5. GMR Says:

    You are not the last person to read this book (from the comments as well as my own perspective). I've definitely heard of it and seen it locally on the shelves, but still I'm not certain whether or not I will pick it up one day. We shall see...thanks for sharing! Happy reading!

  6. Ivana Says:

    I just held it in my hands yesterday, deciding between The Color Purple and this one...I bought the other, but this one`s next. Great review.

  7. Just Mom Says:

    I'm right there with you - just readthisone last weekend! I loved it as well and now need to get my review posted!

  8. Kristen Says:

    Not last at all. I haven't yet read it and was assiduously avoiding it because mysteries are not my thing. Then my book club picked it for next month's books so I guess I have no choice now. I know almost everyone who has read it has loved it but I am a big coward and really dread it!

  9. Morgan Says:

    I've heard so many great things about this book and I really should read it. You're not the last one, lol!

  10. Emidy Says:

    I love mysteries! So this seems pretty interesting to me. I'll have to check it out!

    Une Parole

  11. Anonymous Says:

    I love a "locked room with suspects" mystery - not quite as good as a manor house mystery but nearly. :P

  12. Ruthann Says:

    You're not the last one. I have this on my stack to read and did start it at one point. I hadn't really read reviews so I didn't know it started out really slow and had set it aside by the time I realized that. I'll get back to it sometime.

  13. Thanks for the post. I liked it. Keep going I follow you.
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