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The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo - Stieg Larsson

Updated on March 1, 2018
Gloriousconfusion profile image

I've always been a keen reader and have so many books that I couldn't hope to read them all in my lifetime. I love being surrounded by them

Brief Synopsis of The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

The book was originally called Men Who Hate Women in the Swedish version and the author's antipathy for such men shines though in many layers of the story. The title was changed to The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo for the English version.

A wrongly disgraced investigative journalist, Mikael Blomkvist, is hired to look into the mysterious disappearance of a young woman 43 years previously. He is ably assisted by Lisbeth Salander, a weird Punk security specialist and computer hacker with her own highly individualistic moral code. Her extreme revenge on those who seek to oppress her is another strand of the tale.

Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth Salander -Verblendung
Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth Salander -Verblendung

This is what I thought about The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

A Definite Yes!! - Interesting, unusual, a great page-turner

An intelligent story round all the daily political details of an investigative journalist, written by someone who was himself a well-known Swedish campaigning investigative journalist, famous for his anti-Nazism views.

The book started off a little slowly, with rather complex details about company finances and introducing a series of family members involved with the company, setting the stage for everything which followed. However, it was well worth paying attention, and persevering, because, after the first few pages,there were a number of intriguing strands interspersed, livening things up enough to make me want to see what it was all about, .

A Mysterious Gift

There was the mysterious gift of one flower every year for over 40 years which Vanger, an elderly director in the company received from an unknown person.

A Journalist

There was a journalist, Mikael Blomkvist, our hero, who unjustly lost a libel case brought by Wennerstrom, a fraudulent director of another organization; and as a result Blomkvist was black-listed by most publishers and had to lie low; nonetheless, he was offered a highly rewarding research job in a little village, where he was asked to investigate discreetly (whilst ostensibly writing a biography of the Vanger family business and family links) the disappearance and possible murder 43 years ago of Vanger's niece.

An Unusual Young Woman

Lisbeth Salander was introduced as a wayward young woman with an undefined mental problem whose wings were clipped when she was denied full freedom because the court had ordered that she should have a legal guardian; oh, and the current guardian abused his authority over her so that she had a serious grudge against him; she was a fiendishly accomplished and unlikely computer hacker, although not much good at human relationships,but she did develop an affection for our journalistic friend. It sounds like she and Gary McKinnon the real-life English hacker who the USA have just failed to extradite, would have had much in common.

Summarising My Thoughts About the Book

By the time these facts are established, I couldn't wait to read the rest of the book. I enjoyed the convoluted plot, and the location descriptions were realistic and interesting without being tedious. The characters were dramatic, heinous crimes were threatened and committed and the details of violent and sadistic scenes were not spared.......who would have thought that people could be so horrid!

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was faultlessly translated by Reg Keeland. He managed to keep the atmosphere and fluidity of language, and there was never a point where the translation was obvious or ungainly. One or two Swedish words were retained, but they did not jar or seem out of place.

All-in-all a very enjoyable and satisfying read, and I look forward to reading the other two books in the Millenium Trilogy.

A quote from the book:

"... fraud that was so extensive it was no longer merely criminal - it was business".

The Heroine

The Hero

Some Videos About The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

In these videos you will find a bit about the book The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, a book club review, a film review, a song about the girl Lisbeth Salander.

There is also an interview with the author of the biography about Stieg Larsson "The Man Who Left Too Early".

Larsson's Life Was Every Bit as Exciting as His Characters:

He was a communist, and very vociferously opposed to the activities of the far right anti-semitic Nazi sympathisers in Sweden.

He was also a strong supporter of women's equality and his views about oppression of women shine through clearly in the fictional action of his book - those who have shown violence and aggression to women, and Lisbeth in particular, get their very unpleasant come-uppance, as she seeks to avenge the assaults on her.

This is Where You Can Rate the Book, in this Poll - Have a bit of fun with Lisbeth and Mikail

Let's see whether you thought it should be on the best seller's list

On a scale of 1-7, what did you REALLY think?

See results

An Ominous Line:

"Then I discovered that being related

is no guarantee of love!"

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    • Gloriousconfusion profile image

      Diana Grant 3 years ago from United Kingdom

      I read the book before I saw the film - I prefer it that way round because then you don't have pre-conceived ideas about the characters you read about

    • Yvette Munro profile image

      Yvette Munro 3 years ago

      What a fantastic hub. I saw the movie, but now I'm quite keen to read the book.

    • Gloriousconfusion profile image

      Diana Grant 4 years ago from United Kingdom

      @anitabreeze: Yes I agree. In fact I think it's usually better to read the book first and then see the film, because that way you don't have preconceived ideas about the characters.

    • BLouw profile image

      Barbara Walton 4 years ago from France

      I loved all three books - and the films too. Excellent, great stories and hard-hitting. Worthwile.

    • Scarlettohairy profile image

      Peggy Hazelwood 4 years ago from Desert Southwest, U.S.A.

      I loved the first book but not the second and third as much. Really suspenseful writing!

    • profile image

      anitabreeze 4 years ago

      I've real all 3 books, each one better than the last! Saw the Swedish films with the English subtitles. Loved it all, but definitely read the books because the movies do not delve into the social issues that the book addresses and in my mind these are a huge part of the story.

    • LisaAuch1 profile image

      Lisa Auch 7 years ago from Scotland

      loved it loved it!! can't say any more if you have not read these books start from the beginning with this one! it is awesome

    • Pete D profile image

      Pete D 7 years ago

      Added your novel review as a featured page on my movie review of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Thumbs up!