Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

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Okay.  I give all of you permission to string me up by my toes and throw rotten veggies at me.  I have neglecting you and my blog for WAY.  TO.  LONG.  I have been reading though, but the reason for this hiatus has been because the only reading materials that have passed though my hands in the last few months have been What to Expect When Your Expecting, and The Joys of Breastfeeding and other such reference books.  And while that is very very interesting and enjoyable reading material for a mom-to-be it isn't great fodder for this blog.  I am sure you don't want to know (especially my male followers) my thoughts on birth plans, placentas, and the joys my breasts are going to bring to my future prodigy.  However, I have been able to squeeze in some pleasure reading so I am going to give you a few reviews here in the next few weeks.

Lets start with The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson.  I finally jumped on the Dragon Tattoo bandwagon and picked this story up as an audio book.  I must say that I am pleasantly surprised but a little let down at the same time.  With all they hype around this book and the others in the series I was expecting to fall head over heels in love with this book like I did with Time Travelers Wife.  However, I enjoyed the book immensely but I don't know that it was worth all the hype that it has received in the past few years.  The long and short of it, is the book is a murder mystery.  That is it.  A VERY VERY good murder mystery but a murder mystery non-the-less.  Some how my ears had escaped all spoilers and all synopsis's of this book so I really had NO IDEA what it was about when I started it.  For some reason I thought it was about Swedish stock brokers (I have no idea why) and had no idea it was a thriller/murder mystery (which I must say was a peasant surprise because I just couldn't see what I would like about a book revolving around the Swedish stock market).

So it starts off rather dry and I was thinking "oh hell, how I am I going to get through this whole thing??"  We meet Mikael Blomkvist, he is a financial/political journalist and he has just published an article in his magazine about Hans-Erik Wennerstrom.  When Wennerstrom charges Blomkvist with writing a hurtful article that isn't entirely true Blomkvist is sentenced to prison time.  To clear his head Blomkvist takes a job on the tiny island of Hedeby to write the family history of the prominent Vanger family.  To the public it looks like Blomkvist is writing this families memoirs but in truth he is investigating a murder that happened 40 years earlier on that very island.  The cold case murder happened to a 16 year old girl that lived on the island with her uncle Henrik Vanger.  Along the way Blomkvist and his unlikely friend Lisbeth Salander (the girl with the dragon tattoo), unravel the mystery of the missing girl, uncover the serial murderer of dozens of other missing women that span over a 50 year time span, and uncover the truth behind the Wennerstrom Corporation.  

This book really is a whirlwind of plot twists, love connections, and mystery.  The characters are extremely well developed and the story telling style is very interesting and flows very nicely.  I would recommend this book to almost anyone (unless you have a weak stomach when it comes to violence towards women, I know that hits strong nerves with some people).  Book clubs could discuss the heck out of it and it is equally good if you take it on vacation with you or if you are doing some more serious reading.  I am really looking forward to reading the other books in the series, however, I don't think the book lives up to the hype, so don't be surprised if you feel a little let down after you read it.

RATING: 4 Stars

3 more reviews on The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo:

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
{Library Audio Book}
ISBN: 0307577580
16hours 19minutes
Read by Martin Wenner

If you liked The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo you should also read: The Disappearing Act of Esme Lennox by Maggie O' Farrell


  1. Like you, I was a little late to TGWTDT party. I only read it this summer. I also had high expectations. Although the first half of the book is so full of character development and background info, I did eventually become riveted. In the end I really liked it but can understand why some readers didn't make it thru. I did move on to the second book and I can happily say I LOVED IT!! I found it much better than book 1. I hope you get a chance to read it. I think it won't disappoint you.

  2. This one of those books that have been on my shelf for over a year. A good friend that has the same taste as me forced herself to get through and complete it, that sealed the deal for me, I won't be reading this series.

    There is no way it will live up to all the hype.

    My brother read them back to back and is upset there probably won't be more coming and if it is won't be the same because it will be someone finishing the authors works.

  3. LOL, I was late to the party as well. I cracked up every other page when there was a mention of coffee.

    Here is my review:

  4. I was early and read all three books twice (a while ago). I loved the books when I read them but that's that and now I'm done with it.

    I think most people do like these books, there is something there for everyone. But yes, there is a small minority that doesn't like it. Leeswammes (Judith)

  5. You resisted longer than I did! I read it in April this year. My review is here: I'm one of those "strikes a strong note" people re: violence towards women.

    Great review, thanks.

  6. True confession: I skipped this entire review and went straight to the comment section. I am currently reading this book and will have to compare notes when I'm done :)

    I'm a fellow book lover, and I saw your blog on 20SB. Looking forward to following your reading list!

  7. This was a selection for our book club and if it hadn't been one we chose to read as a group I'm not sure I would have plowed through the first pages. I found parts of the book confusing.

  8. I have read Stieg Larsson's trilogy some time in 2010 and loved all three of them. I love murder/mystery novels and the fast-paced plots are deliciously engaging.

    I loved The Time Traveller's Wife too.

    Anyway, just started my own bookblog and decided to follor yours. Feel free to visit mine at

  9. Just stoppin' by to say hello. Have you had your baby yet? I can't remember when you were due. --Hope all is well. I sure miss your wonderful reviews. :)

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  11. Not long till the film's out - six of the tracks from the soundtrack are available for free download already. Sounds suitably dark and atmospheric as well...