THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO by Steig Larsson (published in Sweden 2005, translated 2009) threw me for a loop. I thought it was going to be a straight up thriller, murder mystery. I was shocked to read sex crime after sex crime. The cover only said it was about Mikael Blomkvist, a once-respected financial journalist, whose professional life falls apart. He gets an offer to research the disappearance of a Swedish industrialists neice that happened 40 years prior. He reluctantly accepts and eventually (halfway through the book) hires Lisbeth Slander (tattoo girl.)
I’m confused at why the title is as such when Lisbeth is a secondary character. But also the above blurb doesn’t warn you that Lisbeth is molested and raped. It also doesn’t warn you that as Blomkvist is reasearching a murderer and uncovers a rapist. Can I get an “ew” from the crowd please? I would have liked some sense of warning that I was walking into that one.
This book was mentally paining because the author (may he rest in peace) gives endless descriptions about the industry of Sweden, the inner workings of the government mediator program that Lisbeth is in and other such boring details that made me want to skip the mess and get on with the story.
Oddly enough, there was too much info about stupid stuff and not enough info about the characters themselves. He lacked in the human description area and when he finally got around to telling me that Blomkvist had blonde hair the hung in his eyes, I was confused and trying to change my mental picture for the rest of the book.
The only thing I liked in this entire book was the characterization of Lisbeth. She’s the only one who was described to the gills, not just with narrative but by her actions. The woman hardly talked, yet I loved her boldness and ability to not put up with crap. (If you’ve read it, you know what I mean!! High five on the tattooing, right?)
1. Poor: A ridiculous waste of valuable time. (I didn’t really want to finish the book but I’m addicted to stories and I was previewing it for a book club. Veto.)