Rated of 5
This financial thriller set in Sweden has already achieved bestseller status in Europe and is the first of a trilogy delivered just before his death by a man who spent his life fighting racial and religious intolerance and exposing neofascism in Europe. The writing style rests firmly in the Ludlum, Grisham, Baldacci tradition but introduces a refreshing new voice.
Having never been to Sweden, I was initially challenged by unfamiliar names of cities, streets, magazines and other elements of modern Swedish life. But the story is exciting and smart and ultra contemporary, comprising a closed-room murder mystery, a dastardly financial villain, psychopathic descendants of Nazis and the girl in the title. She is in fact an extra mystery all in herself and as good as any Neal Stephenson heroine.
I got a bit of the feeling of a first novel but except for a few clunky sections, Larsson kept me turning the pages. I enjoyed his decidedly European take on love and sex. I suspect a bit of hype in the title, since the main character was a financial journalist and I was left feeling unsatisfied by the fate of the dragon tattooed girl. Hopefully we will see her again in the sequels.