I finally finished reading The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo a few minutes ago. Verdict: I loved it!!! I had heard about the book a while ago and thought I would read it someday, but now with the American movie version coming out, I really felt like reading it. I’m the type of person who likes to rad the book first and then watch the movie so I picked up a copy of Larsson’s book (translated from Swedish by Reg Keeland) a few weeks ago. I have to admit, it was really difficult to get into the book.
The prologue if pretty interesting because you learn about gifts being sent to an old man on his birthday every year from his niece’s killer. So that got me all excited about the mystery in the novel. Then, the next two chapters are all about a magazine article gone wrong and a man name Mikael Blomkvist being accused of libel. I had such a hard time getting through those chapters and was ready to give up. I mean, the book is almost 500 pages long and I just kept thinking that if the rest of the book was anything like these two chapters I’d be too bored to read it. But, I kept with it.
The book is very well written, it just takes a while to appreciate that good writing and to get involved in the story. The mystery really takes a while to build up. When you first learn about the murder of Harriet Vanger, you’ll probably be thinking that the old man (her uncle, Henrik Vanger) is absolutely crazy. Not only was the crime commited 36 years ago, but he thinks a family member did it.
The majority of the first half of the book is about the evidence that’s already been gathered over 36 years ago. The mystery finally starts to really pick up about 200 pages into the novel. So it takes a while. But trust me, it’s worth the wait!
Now, you might be wondering about the title of the book. Harriet did not have a dragon tattoo so the novel isn’t named after her. The girl with the dragon tattoo is a 25-year-old computer hacker, Lisbeth Salander, who works as a Private Investigator for a company in Sweden. She’s hired by Blomkvist and Henrik Vanger to work as Blomvist’s research assistant and dig up old facts about the case. She plays a key role in this novel and is probably my favourite character. She has some funny comments that she keeps to herself throughout her interactions with different people.
As you read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo you’ll be introduced to so many members of the Vanger family that you won’t know what to do with yourself. I found myself wondering who someone was when they were mentioned sometimes for the second or third time. But all these characters will definitely keep you on the edge of your seat as you try to figure out the mystery of what happened to Harriet Vanger in 1966.
And without further ado, here’s the full-length trailer for the movie version that I am super excited to see! But definitely read the novel first!