Title: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Author: Stieg Larsson
Release Date: September 16, 2008
Rating: 5 out of 5
From the dust jacket:
A spellbinding amalgam of murder mystery, family saga, love story, and financial intrigue.
It’s about the disappearance forty years ago of Harriet Vanger, a young scion of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden . . . and about her octogenarian uncle, determined to know the truth about what he believes was her murder.
It’s about Mikael Blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently at the wrong end of a libel case, hired to get to the bottom of Harriet’s disappearance . . . and about Lisbeth Salander, a twenty-four-year-old pierced and tattooed genius hacker possessed of the hard-earned wisdom of someone twice her age—and a terrifying capacity for ruthlessness to go with it—who assists Blomkvist with the investigation. This unlikely team discovers a vein of nearly unfathomable iniquity running through the Vanger family, astonishing corruption in the highest echelons of Swedish industrialism—and an unexpected connection between themselves.
It’s a contagiously exciting, stunningly intelligent novel about society at its most hidden, and about the intimate lives of a brilliantly realized cast of characters, all of them forced to face the darker aspects of their world and of their own lives.
Having read rave reviews about Steig Larsson’s debut novel, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, I had high expectations. At the same time, I was a bit wary with the knowledge that most hyped books end up to be disappointing reads because my expectations are initially so high. So I approached the book with some trepidation and was surprised to discover that none was necessary; The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo really was an amazing read that blew any expectations I may have had out of the water.
In some ways, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo really reminded me of Tana French’s novel The Likeness. The subject matters weren’t similar by any means, but they both had an exceptionally literary quality that is difficult to find in mysteries. Any fan of Tana French would most likely enjoy this novel, as they are both exceptional mysteries.
I had trouble putting Larsson’s novel down. From the prologue itself, I was completely gripped by this powerful novel. I felt like I had to know what happened, and was completely satisfied with the conclusion. Though all threads weren’t resolved, I felt like my curiosity had been sated. The characters were also very well written and personable. All in all, it really was an impressively well-written novel
I was surprised when I discovered that the author of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, Stieg Larsson, passed away in 2004 from a heart attack. However, he left three unpublished manuscripts behind, the first of which was The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. These three novels were written as the “Millennium Trilogy.” The second book, called The Girl Who Played With Fire, is set to be released in the US on January 8, 2009 – a book I will most definitely be reading.