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What is all the praise about
The stilted writing, possibly the translation, is full of cliches,"cub reporter", and too many more to quote. The writer insists on advertising the computer hardware used by brand name and capacity details, which are out of date already. He seems to be trying to demonstrate that he is knows a lot about electronics. These are distractions to what might have been an interesting mystery. Character interactions are forced and artificial. The characters seem to be put in bed together to make it an adult book, The sex is described, not transmitted in the writing.
I guess I'll slog through the other "Girl" book because they were gifts. Maybe I'll return the unread one.
This book makes Stephen King look like Dostoevsky
After this... back to the classics.
I am amazed that this book is so popular but readily acknowledge that I am in a small minority, other people have recommended it and seem to think it a work of considerable merit. The "discoveries" were quite effective and moderately exciting. The novel deals with crude extremes instead of subtle characterisation. What characterisation there is seems two dimensional. Dialogue is mechanical and you would hardly be able to tell who was speaking if you took the speeches out of context. Instead the writer relies on clumsy visual clues (tattoos and piercings - radical). The spicier elements of the book manage to be both nasty AND dull. The translator may have a good deal for which to answer and the book badly needed a decisive editor. I realise the book is not a travelogue, but for a beautiful country Larsson was unable to convey an intriguing sense of place. Half a Hollywood screenplay is all it ever was. Conrad, Dickens Woolf and Austen can all rest easy.
It was so difficult to get into the book__-all that stuff about Blookvist...then a long boring story of a family, which went from one character to another and a disgusting ending, which I suspected all the time.
This was the most boring book I ever read. I don't understand why is is so popular. I am throwing it away.
Intriguing beginning, interesting set up, boring performance.
Do editors even read the last third of any novel?
The Girl in 9th Grade
From a kid's perspective
This is a book that cries out for a competent editor who would have had the back-bone to sit an author down and tell him frankly that he was losing credibility and focus.
There was such promise of a finely plotted and richly populated story as the novel began and moved to its midpoint. But as the novel progressed the light flickered and the plot vanished. We were left with the author rushing to three endings: one about the men who hate women, the second about what happened to the missing girl, and the third about revenge. Not one of these "stories" were connected to each other in a Believable Way. Improbable all.
A good editor would have helped clean up the focus.
A broken plot with poor characters (except for the Girl -- who is intriguing) but I will not be spending precious time reading the remainder of the series.
Speaking as a freshman in high school, I found this book to be very good. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo has many dull parts that were a bit hard to get but the whole premise was intriguing and I couldn't wait to find out what happened. Before I read this book I had never really thought about the country of Sweden, it doesn't really crop up in the news, nor does it crop up in school work. So as I read this I was just amazed at the injustices that appeared. I'm not sure if they are realistic, but if they are then hopefully someone is doing something about them. All in all, this book, as well as the trilogy was great.
For a so-called "suspense novel", I thought this book was very boring. I could only force myself to read maybe half a chapter at a time. Definitely did not catch my interest at all. I have read other mystery suspense books and loved them, but this one, no thanks. I would not recommend it to anyone. The prologue was really the only part I kinda enjoyed.
how much suspension
Since thrillers are not my genre of choice, I wonder how many of them require "willing suspension of disbelief" to the extent that Larsson does. One of the most tortured of the victims had a lovely marriage, is a devoted mother, and can function in the environment where all of the horror happened. She is wealthy, charming and ready to take on huge responsibilities. How does this magical transformation take place? In a psychiatrist's office daily for endless years during which time she needs drugs to sleep? We aren't told. She is too "whole" for the tortures she endured. Salander is the science fiction character whose brilliance and maneuvers require more of that "suspension." Are we really to believe that at this stage in her life she can have gratifying sex with a man? It is not enough to shock the reader with graphic details of the acts; the responsibility is to make us see what the torturers have done, how they have emotionally crippled and maimed the victims. Then a victim's recovery is more believable and appreciated. Then the emphasis is where it needs to be.