Tuesday, May 25, 2010
The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson
Title: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest
Author: Stieg Larsson
Translated from the Swedish: Reg Keeland
ISBN: 9780307269997, Alfred A. Knopf, 2010
Genre: Thriller, #3 in the Millennium trilogy
Source: Amazon Vine
First Line: An estimated 600 women served during the American Civil War.
To those of you who aren't up to speed with Larsson's trilogy, I am going to try my best to avoid giving things away, but it's not going to be easy.
In the last book, The Girl Who Played With Fire, Lisbeth Salander-- portrayed as being worse than the Devil himself by media and police-- confronted her very real, very human, demons. In this book, she realizes that confronting them is not enough. She is going to have to destroy them. What goes against her grain is that she is forced to trust journalist Mikael Blomkvist, even to the point of letting him run large sections of the show.
This book even more than the previous two relies on intricate plotting and the pieces fitting together exactly. This book, more than the other two, showed unevenness and sections that needed a much sterner hand at editing. Because the plot was intricate, Larsson spent pages explaining various government agencies, how they were set up, the people they reported to, and so on. These were the sections of the book that made my eyes glaze over.
Another subplot involving Erika Berger, the former editor of Millennium magazine, although illustrating what many women have to deal with in male-dominated sections of the workforce, was really unnecessary and moved the focus away from the most fascinating characters: Salander and Blomkvist. Even Salander's trip to Gibraltar could have been shortened.
Any time the action moved away from that two-character focus, the book began to drag, which is why I feel that it would have benefited from stricter pruning. But was I greatly disappointed in the book? No. I had to see the outcome of Lisbeth Salander's story. Was she going to succeed? How was she going to succeed?
Larsson has given me a wonderful offbeat Dulcinea and her Don Quixote. I may always wonder what the books would have become if Larsson had been allowed to work on them himself, but the characters will always remain: a young woman who refused to accept that everyone else was more important than she, and the man who believed her.
My Book Rating Scale:
A+...Don't delay, get your hands on a copy of this book!
A...I loved it!
B...I really liked it.
C...I liked it, with a few reservations.
D...I finished it, but it's not my cup of tea.
- Phoenix, Arizona, United States
- Hi! I'm addicted to books (especially crime fiction), laughter and traveling off the beaten path. In my free time, when my eyes aren't glued to the printed page, one of them is usually pressed against the viewfinder of my camera. Let's see... books, laughter, travel, photography. Anything else? Oh yeah-- my dream house wouldn't have a kitchen!
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 Unported License.