Book Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Name: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Author: Stieg Larsson
Genre: Crime Fiction
Language: English (Originally in Swedish)
Pages: 554
Awards: Glass Key Award (2006), Boeke Prize (2008), ITV3 Crime Thriller Award (2008), Galaxy British Book Award (2009), Anthony Award (2009)
Movies: 2009 (Swedish), 2011 (English)
Buy: FlipKart, Amazon
My Rating:

Several cuts above most thrillers… intelligent, complex, with a gripping plot and deeply intriguing characters
Philip Pullman
What a cracking novel! I haven’t read such a stunning thriller debut for years… Brilliantly written and totally gripping Minette Walters

Mikael Blomkvist, Publisher of political magazine Millennium in Stockholm, loses a case against billionaire Swedish industrialist Hans-Erik Wennerström involving damaging allegations and is sentenced for three months.

Blomkvist resign himself from magazine’s board of director and At the same time, he gets offere from Henrik Vanger – from CEO of Vanger Enterprise – to do some freelance assignment for year. Blomkvist accept Henrik’s offer to save his nearly bankrupt magazine on codition that Henrik will provide solid evidence against Hans-Erik Wennerström.

Blomkvist has to work on Vanger’s family history but his real assigment will be resolve some 40 years mystery about Henrik’s niece Harriet disappearance.Vanger admits, he is obsessed with finding out the truth of what happened to Harriet, and expresses his suspicion that Harriet was murdered by a member of the vast Vanger family, many of whom were present in Hedeby on the day of her disappearance. Each year on his birthday Harriet gave Henrik a pressed flower. Vanger explains that every year since Harriet’s disappearance, the murderer has sent him the mocking birthday gift of a framed pressed flower (often of a rare variety), each postmarked from various different countries.

Blomkvist uproots himself from his life in Stockholm, moving to Hedeby and becomes acquainted with the members of the extended Vanger family, most of whom resent his presence. He start a short lived affair with Cecilia Vanger, the niece of Henrik who has been separated from her abusive husband for many years.Blomkvist fulfills his contractual obligations by immersing himself in the case and discovers that he has been invesitgated by Lisbeth Salander (on behalf of Henrik Vanger) and realises that she has hacked into his computer.

Salander is antisocial but extremely intelligent hacker and researcher with photographic memory, specialising in investigating people working at Milton Security. Recognizing her talents, he persuades her to assist him with research. Together, they discover entries in Harriet’s diary that list the names of missing women from across Sweden; this leads them to suspect that they are on the trail of a serial killer who possibly has an accomplice and has been at large for decades. The names are each attached to Bible verses describing brutal forms of divine retribution.

Author covered sexual violence against women in novel as he was witnessed the gang rap of young girl, Lisbeth, and never forgave himself for failing to help her and  hence one of main character of book, Lisbeth Salander is inspired on same.

Some Good lines from Book:

  • “What she had realised was that love was that moment when your heart was about to burst.”
  • “Friendship- my definition- is built on two things. Respect and trust. Both elements have to be there. And it has to be mutual. You can have respect for someone, but if you don’t have trust, the friendship will crumble.- Mikael Blomkvist”
  • “Then I discovered that being related is no guarantee of love!”
  • “I’ve had many enemies over the years. If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s never engage in a fight you’re sure to lose. On the other hand, never let anyone who has insulted you get away with it. Bide your time and strike back when you’re in a position of strength—even if you no longer need to strike back.”
  • “Normally seven minutes of another person’s company was enough to give her a headache so she set things up to live as a recluse. She was perfectly content as long as people left her in peace. Unfortunately society was not very smart or understanding.”
  • “The media have the ability to attract the craziest people to call in perfectly absurd tips. Every newsroom in the world gets updates from UFOlogists, graphologists, scientologists, paranoiacs, and every sort of conspiracy theorist.”
  • “Everyone has secrets. It’s just a matter of finding out what they are”
  • “One of them is that a bastard is always a bastard and if I can hurt a bastard by digging up shit about him, then he deserves it.”
  • “He often wondered whether it were possible to be more possessed by desire for any other woman. The fact was that they functioned well together, and they had a connection as addictive as heroin.”
  • “Impulsive actions led to trouble, and trouble could have unpleasant consequences.”
  • “Never engage in a fight you are sure to lose. On the other hand, never let anyone who has insulted you get away with it. Bide your time and strike back when you are in a position of strength- even if you no longer need to strike back”
  • “Respect and trust. Both elements have to be there. And it has to be mutual. You can have respect for someone but if you don’t have trust, the friendship will crumble.”

Generally when author adds lots of characters in book, reader always losses track of story but here Larsson manage it very beautifully.  He created characters so beautifully. I loved characters like fearless and perfect Lisbeth Salander, dedicated and occasional lover Mikael Blomkvist, obsessed Henrik Vanger, romantic Erika Berger.

Once you start reading this book, you will not think about to put down for a minute. I loved this book so much. Get it and Read it.

About Author:

Source [Wiki]: Karl Stig-Erland Larsson who wrote professionally as Stieg Larsson, was a Swedish journalist and writer, born in Skelleftehamn outside Skellefteå. Larsson was initially a political activist for the Kommunistiska Arbetareförbundet (Communist Workers League), a photographer, and one of Sweden’s leading science fiction fans. In politics he was the editor of the Swedish Trotskyist journal Fjärde internationalen, journal of the Swedish section of the Fourth International. He also wrote regularly for the weekly Internationalen.He is best known for writing the “Millennium series” of crime novels, which were published posthumously. Larsson lived and worked much of his life in Stockholm. He was the second best-selling author in the world in 2008, behind Khaled Hosseini. By March 2010, his “Millennium series” had sold 27 million copies in more than 40 countries.

Enjoy Reading !!!

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8 Responses to Book Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

  1. Pingback: Book Review : The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest | Ujval's Lounge

  2. Pingback: Book Review: The Girl Who Played with Fire | Ujval's Lounge

  3. Avdhoota says:

    Excellent Story, Mystery, Drama, Intelligence…

    Thanks for the review otherwise i would have missed such a nice novel. I completed this in just 3 days,three seating as i couldn’t wait to know the end/suspense….

    Lisbeth Salander…. An Indigenous character…

    • shahujvaln says:

      Absolutely Right………

      Glad to know that you liked it so much… Not only first part, it’s second part is also interesting.. Second part is completely page turner.. Very soon, I am going to write review for same….
      It’s very sad that Millennium series is Stieg Larsson’s debut work and last work..

  4. sayedkhadri says:

    Nice Review.. Read this book long time back.. completed the Millennium Trilogy.. Please do read the other two book, they are also equally page turners. I must say this is one of the best crime fiction I read.
    Thanks “Reg Keeland” for translating it so excellently.

    • shahujvaln says:

      Thanks Sayed..

      Glad to know that you like it… FYI, I purchased Millenium Triology after reading your review 🙂 I am not disappointed.. It’s really a Page Turner…

  5. Still I didn’t see that movie but your description encourage me to watch it 🙂

    • shahujvaln says:

      Thanks Aakash for visiting my space :).

      Glad to know that you are encourage to watch movie :). I hope, you will like it..
      If you get chance, then read book also… book is really a Page turner and Awesome..

      happy reading

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