Mikael Blomkvist is a journalist in trouble. Not only has he just been convicted of libel, but the magazine he edits is experiencing financial difficulties because of it. But then he gets an offer from Henrik Vanger, rich retired business man. Vanger wants Mikael to research his great-niece Harriet’s disappearance 36 years ago, in the hope that he can discover something new. At the same time Lisbeth Salander, young borderline researcher, gets the job to look into Mikael and his libel case.
For a crime novel, which I usually don’t enjoy that much, it was a rather entertaining read. Not particularly well-written, but with interesting politics and fascinating characters.
I wanted to read this one for Lisbeth Salander – she seemed like a fascinating character. And I was not disappointed there: Both she and Mikael are characters I enjoyed. I liked reading about them and I also wanted to know what’s going to happen to them.
But stylistically, the book is a bit of a catastrophe. Larsson comes from journalism and it is quite obvious in two things: one, the research methods seem quite realistic and two, more importantly, he bombards you with details about everything. What computer Mikael uses (basically including harddrive size and RAM), which streets to take to get to anywhere, what people put on their bread, what they ‘re wearing, when they take a shower or have a coffee, what book they’re reading, etc etc etc…
That leads to Death by Information Overload and paralyses the book and the pacing.
But fortunately, once you realize that this is happening, you just start skimming and it’s quite alright. At the same time I don’t think I’ll be reading the rest of the books. I just watch the movies instead to find out what’s going to happen further with Lisbeth and Mikael. Because I do wanna know.