For me this book was not as thrilling as I thought it would be, given the widespread popularity of this series right now. I’ve seen this book everywhere. Perhaps it is the fact that they were all published posthumously that caused widespread attention, or else it was the catchy titles in English. Some people absolutely love the series, others not so much.
Mikael Blomkvist and Lisbeth Salander find themselves unlikely partners in solving the mystery of a serial murderer and financial fraud. The story line is intriguing but the book didn’t hold my attention consistently. It did pull me in at times, but I was also pushing myself through other parts. Having said that, I did enjoy the characters of Blomkvist and Salander enough to read another book in the series, only to see what adventures they find themselves in next. I saw the movie trailer for this story and I think it might be one of those rare cases where the movie is better than the book.
The book is a translation from Swedish and the title in the original is ‘Men Who Hate Women’. Larsson was himself disgusted by sexual violence against women because of a horrific crime he witnessed when he was young. He never forgave himself for not helping the victim whose name was Lisbeth. Violence against women was definitely an underlying theme in this book, especially in the small prefaces to each chapter. Incidentally, Larsson himself had a magazine which suffered financial difficulties, so there is definitely an autobiographical element from the author in a number of ways.
The controversy surrounding Larsson’s life and death and the story of his partner’s struggle for compensation, makes for more interesting reading than the book itself. Here is a link to the article:
Daily Mail Article