Author: Stieg Larsson
Title: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Description: Because of my prodigious TBR pile, I’m always late to the party with extremely popular books (well, with any books, but no one has read the others). So I already knew a good bit about this one going in, and I realize that many will have already read it. Briefly, a disgraced journalist is hired to look into a decades old case of a missing girl.
Plot: This is one of the rare books where plot was more important than character for me. I loved the tight plotting and the pacing with which Larsson revealed new clues and old secrets was just about perfect.
Characters: The two main characters were the journalist, Mikael Blomkvist, and Lizbeth Salander, an independent researcher. Lizbeth is, of course, the girl with the tattoo. The fact that the book is named for her gives some indication of her importance to Larsson, though she is definitely secondary to Blomkvist in this book. I did have some problems with Blomkvist, or maybe with Swedish morality (or lack thereof). It struck me as extremely odd that Blomkvist quickly entered into fairly intense relationships with women he hardly knew after they came on to him—he came across as passive and totally emotionally absent. The women, of course, all fell in love with him.
Writing style: It’s intense. This isn’t one of them cozy mysteries.
Audience: Yep, it’s a mystery and it’s got that sexually fueled violence that turns my stomach faster than anything else. If you can handle that, though, it’s a rewarding read.
Wrap-up: I loved this book from start to finish, despite being reluctant to pick it back up during certain harrowing sections. Can’t wait to get my hands on book two. 5/5*