Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Book Review:The Millenium Trilogy

Today's review is a 3-for-one. I just finished reading the last book in Stieg Larrson's Millenium Trilogy (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played With Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest). Yes, that's kept me busy for a couple of weeks!

These books have been on the best seller list for --what?--years now, but I decided to give the first one a try after my daughters started passing them around.

I downloaded the first one on my IPad and decided to see how I liked it before springing for the other two. I don't know if "liking it" is the right description but I was interested enough to keep going. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo really set up the other two books well. The second book, The Girl Who Played With Fire, seemed less interesting until the very end when the cliff-hanging ending spurred me onward to the last in the series, The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest.

There are so many suspenseful plotlines in this series that it is impossible to discuss them specifically without giving away their endings. However The Girl (Lisbeth Salander) is one of the most memorable characters I have encountered in recent fiction. The journalist who helps her is clearly based on the author himself, as I discovered when I got curious enough to read his biography online. That explained the Police/Intelligence Agency=Bad, Journalists/Private Security/Hackers=Good bias I had detected.

The plot is a heady stew of domestic violence, international intrigue, rogue intelligence agents, incredibly disfunctional families, computer hacker networks, journalistic power struggles, rape and murder. Salander's revenge against men who hate women is the unifying theme of the series.

It's a shame the author died before publication of the trilogy. I would have like to read more from him. After I finished the books I marveled at how expertly the entire suspenseful and intricate plotline had been crafted and resolved. The only loose end I noted was the whereabouts of The Girl's lost twin sister.

There is a lot of violence in the story, so I don't recommend it for everyone. I had to put it down at times--especially just before bedtime--because I got too wound up.

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