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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg…

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (original 2005; edition 2009)

by Stieg Larsson, Reg Keeland (Translator)

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28,487143933 (4.02)1 / 728
Title:The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
Authors:Stieg Larsson
Other authors:Reg Keeland (Translator)
Info:Vintage Crime / Black Lizard (2009), Perfect Paperback, 600 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (Author) (2005)

  1. 282
    Miss Smilla's Feeling for Snow by Peter Høeg (taz_)
    taz_: Charm school drop-outs Lisbeth Salander of "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" and Smilla Qaaviqaaq Jaspersen of "Smilla's Sense of Snow" strike me as unconventional soul sisters of the detective mystery. Each haunted by demons of the past, fiercely independent, armored in cynicism and misanthropy, they share a certain psychic landscape and brilliant, icy resourcefulness. If you love one, I predict you'll love the other.… (more)
  2. 92
    Jar City by Arnaldur Indriðason (ansate, ANeumann)
  3. 92
    Faceless Killers by Henning Mankell (Ronoc, Ronoc)
  4. 40
    Mallory's Oracle by Carol O'Connell (kraaivrouw)
    kraaivrouw: I think Lisbeth and Mallory have a lot in common.
  5. 51
    1Q84 by Haruki Murakami (BillPilgrim)
    BillPilgrim: Another kick-ass female heroine
  6. 40
    The Informationist by Taylor Stevens (aliklein)
  7. 41
    The Draining Lake by Arnaldur Indriðason (ansate)
  8. 63
    Child of the Hive by Jessica Meats (EllieM)
    EllieM: Are you wondering 'what next?' after reading the The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo? I recommend that you try Child of The Hive by Jessica Meats. Both books are plot driven action packed thrillers with a rather unexpected heroine. Like Lisbeth Salander, Child of the Hive's Sophie is a highly intelligent computer geek. Someone you would not necessarily choose as a best friend but you grow fond of her as the story progresses. Stieg Larsson's blockbuster is a more traditional 'whodunnit' and the main plot puzzle is the identity of the murderer. Jessica Meats writes in a slightly a different genre, Child of The Hive is a speculative thriller on the borders of science fiction, and as such it presents different puzzles. For example a moral one, exactly which sub group should I classify as 'the bad guys'? As for guessing the ending, most people will not see where the book is going. I failed. But the surprising nature of the story is much of its fun. With the benefit of hindsight you can see that the climax of 'Child' is tidy and satisfactory. Certainly not one of those annoying thrillers with a plot balanced on one very unlikely clue which has been carefully draped in numerous red herrings. Both books should appeal to a wide range of readers, but I suggest Child of the Hive is also more suitable for a slightly younger group than The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo which is distinctly adult in places. Child of The Hive is a really ‘good read’, I give it 5 stars out of five… (more)
  9. 30
    The Mermaids Singing by Val McDermid (kraaivrouw)
    kraaivrouw: It's mentioned in the book and it's another great thriller.
  10. 31
    A Place of Execution by Val McDermid (adithyajones)
  11. 119
    Let the Right One In by John Ajvide Lindqvist (MyriadBooks, mcenroeucsb)
    mcenroeucsb: Let the Right One In is a Swedish novel about a child vampire who just wants to be a normal kid, the pedophile who is obsessed with her, and the neighbor boy who wants to befriend her.
  12. 32
    The Dogs of Riga by Henning Mankell (Ronoc)
  13. 10
    Blue Belle by Andrew Vachss (birder4106)
    birder4106: Burke (Vacchs) und Salander (Larsson) haben sehr viel gemeinsam.
  14. 65
    The Ice Princess by Camilla Läckberg (Patangel)
  15. 21
    Sun Storm by Åsa Larsson (amberwitch)
    amberwitch: Wellwritten crimestories set in Sweden with female protagonists.
  16. 11
    The Chatham School Affair by Thomas H. Cook (adithyajones)
  17. 22
    The Pale Blue Eye by Louis Bayard (sweetiegherkin)
  18. 22
    In Lucia's Eyes by Arthur Japin (nanajavid)
    nanajavid: Een schitterend boek.
  19. 00
    So Much Pretty by Cara Hoffman (cafepithecus)
    cafepithecus: Another book about men who hate women, and the women who take them down.
  20. 22
    The Likeness by Tana French (fyrefly98)
    fyrefly98: Both are solid, well-written, character-driven detective stories.

(see all 38 recommendations)


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English (1,296)  Dutch (33)  Spanish (23)  French (14)  German (14)  Swedish (14)  Italian (11)  Danish (11)  Catalan (10)  Portuguese (Brazil) (3)  Norwegian (2)  Finnish (2)  Portuguese (Portugal) (2)  Hebrew (1)  All languages (1,436)
Showing 1-5 of 1296 (next | show all)
More like a 1.5. First I should say that as far as having any literary quality, this book possesses none. The book reads like a police report, but in its own way its effective. Larsson was a communist and a socialist, and if he had let this bleed too much into his narrative he knew very well no one one would read this trash. But as it stands he kept his political views in check for the most part, a pretty big accomplishment for a socialist.

I had many problems with the book, but it was an OK mystery that made me want to read enough to at least finish. It could have been about 250 pages less and possibly a far more satisfactory read. It seems that whoever edited the book pulled a fast one on the reader by starting another story at the end, after the mystery had been solved, which went on for more than a hundred pages in order, I suppose,to entice the reader to buy the second volume. A little subversive, but it's a business. I get it. I just didn't care enough about the cardboard characters to care what they did next. I only cared about the mystery. You know, the thinly veiled one.

To say one more thing about the characters: There was so little here to attach to that I just didn't care what these people did in their personal lives, I just wanted to know what happened to you-know-who (no spoilers here).

It was painfully obvious that Herr Larsson crafted Blomkvist as a the hero that Larsson imagined himself to be, a savior of brutalized women, a ladies man, and an intrepid journalist. The problem is that I did not perceive the character as he intended. I saw an empty man, which I suspect, since the narrative is so transparent, is the way Larsson really felt about himself.

I think this book told us more about Blomkvist's emptiness (and therefore Larsson's) than it did about the virtue of such a man. I found absolutely nothing at all good in Blomkvist as a hero. He was just a dude, nothing more. Not especially smart, or dashing, or full of any character trait that would give me a reason to care about him. He was kind of a sorry-ass hero. Not unlikable, just sorry, as a result of his stiff two dimensions.

I believe that this is the reason we are made to think that Salander is the Hero of the book (she's not in my opinion) because she's the one with all the interest, and even then I couldn't bring myself to care about her.

All that to say the book did not live up to any of its promise. This rag should have sold a few hundred thousand in Sweden. But then perhaps I am too optimistic about the depth of American literary tastes. ( )
  DanielAlgara | Sep 26, 2014 |
I'm sure in my book review I will not have a lot of new things to say, but will contribute my insight into this fascinating if dysfunctional mystery novel, The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo!

The back-story regarding the author is interesting. Stieg Larsson was a man, born in 1954, a Swedish journalist who had a life companion, unmarried, worked for a magazine, Expo, and campaigned against neo-Nazi groups in Sweden. He died suddenly of a heart attack before finishing his fourth novel.

The book has the same general themes: Neo-Nazi-ism, working for a small magazine, having a life companion (except in this fiction, she's married), and having a journalist (except he's disgraced). Interesting parallels throughout.

The first thing that struck me was the slow, almost biographical documentary style regarding the life of Blomkvist. We learn that he recently tried and failed to convict a major financier in the Swedish arena of corrupt business leaders, Wennerstrom. We learn the back-story of this, how he met an old friend on a boat and got incriminating evidence against him -- however, Blomkvist loses a libel trial and ends up getting a prison sentence.

The reader never really meets Wennerstrom and the author finds no need to further instruct the reader as to the man's life. In fact, he is really only mentioned as a man greedy with power and wealth. And we find out what fingers he has in the corrupt pies of insanity and politics.

Rather, the book gives us background into Blomkvist's life: basically a journalist who has had some modicum of success in his life, and although a man of impeccable journalistic morals and looks down on other financial journalists as hacks -- his personal morality is sketchy at best.

His girlfriend -- who's married to another, but they have this "understanding" wink-wink -- is Eva Berger who runs The Millennium, the magazine that they both work for. To make a long story short, we learn more about the magazine, the people in it, and the goals they are all going for.

The other side of the spectrum is Lisbeth Salander -- the girl with those darn dragon tattoos -- who is another conflicted, strange person. Blomkvist at least has some sense of intelligence and understanding of humans. Lisbeth has none of that. She is very introverted, becomes the "perfect victim" of the law, the courts and psychiatrists -- and ends up the ward of the state. All because she simply cannot be bothered with people!

Despite this hate-filled notion that everyone thinks she's a freak and her revenge-spawned intention to get at every woman-hating man in existence, we learn a few things about her "friends" -- and about her unusual ability (she considers it freaky) to have a photographic memory and is an expert hacker -- perhaps the best hacker in all of Europe.

The story really starts moving when two things happen: Blomkvist gets a job to write a biography on the Vanger family, one of the richest and most influential in all of Sweden. They are also the most insane, the most amoral bunch of people you've ever had the displeasure of meeting!

Henry Vanger actually has the bio as a feint. In actuality, would Blomkvist please find out whatever happened to Harriet Vanger, who disappeared 40 years ago?

After some adventure (and sexual misadventure and some out & out rape & torture -- be warned, not for the faint of heart!) Salander runs into Blomkivst and becomes his assistant researcher in finding out what happened to Harriet.

Was Harriet murdered? And does the murderer still live after all these years?

The author's writing style is very interesting -- he takes a long, long time to build up suspense and on occasion beats the reader over the head with some pretty horrific tales! Then we slow down, almost boring. Then we cannot stop turning the pages fast enough!

Is this book as dysfunctional as the Vanger Family? Holy smokes!

The ending was mildly surprising and most of the characters are involved as well. But Larsson takes some time, a good 20 plus pages, to wrap up all the loose ends.

My only other criticism involves sympathy: should I sympathize with an old Swedish journalist cum womanizer who's been dissed by the Wennerstrom Corp., or should I feel for the amoral young woman who could not care less about others to the point of fanatic selfishness? Tough call!

The book is highly recommended for its style and substance, not being afraid of criticizing financial institutions, journalistic bad sense and right wing fanaticism (and associated sexual perversion, protected by the monied elite).

Larsson will be missed. His style of writing takes some getting used to, but man what novels he would have wrote if he had stayed a bit longer to finish that fourth, incomplete novel!

( )
1 vote jmourgos | Sep 12, 2014 |
So far I love this book. I read half of it in one day. And today I wish I could read it rather than work. My guess is that I will finish it tonight. And I'm SO glad that there are two more in the series. ( )
  kwbridge | Sep 6, 2014 |
Finally finished, didn't enjoy this book much. The plot? Well, it just all seemed so obvious, that is once we eventually reached that point - she would still be alive ..... And so on. And as for the Australian outback part, laughable, obviously the author has never travelled here.
Seemed to me that ten words were used when three would do, too much detail, I really don't care to know so much About a sandwich.
The emails, constant repetition of email addresses, so tedious, yes, a tedious book, like wading through mud
Will not be reading/listening to the rest of the trilogy.
I should have known better, I seldom enjoy a book that has rave reviews, guess my head works differently to the majority. Makes it difficult
to find a riveting book
( )
  becsto | Sep 1, 2014 |
This series is not for everyone. The pacing is slow and steady, the characters not necessarily heroic or morally righteous, and the events that shape the characters painful and humiliating. There is not a romantic ending or denouement, and the good guys get knocked on their butts when a just world would support their empowerment.

That said, I enjoyed this novel and the rest of the series much more than I expected to. Psychologically, the characters are more complex than the average reader might encounter, and the decisions they make are consistent with their personalities, but not at all what I might have chosen. The characters are nevertheless compelling and I root for them to overcome the challenges in their path.

The sordid parts of this series can descend into brutality, and the difficult social awkwardness of Salander complicates her life, making it more likely she will encounter more ugliness, though this is not her intent.

Salander's friendship with Blomkvist provides the series' a path to resolution, although not as a romantic reader might have envisioned it. Nothing happened as I expected, and yet, I was immensely satisfied with the series.

None of the books stands alone. In book 1, the friendship is set, in book 2, Salander's attempts to simplify her life only complicate it further, and in book 3, nothing makes much sense unless you have the weighty emotional history of the two previous books in mind when you read it. I relish the fact that a rehash of the previous novels is not dragged into the story. I find that muddies the current story unnecessarily. Find The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and read it first. ( )
  CorinasQuill | Aug 31, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 1296 (next | show all)
[Richman reviews several Scandinavian novels, including Larsson's.]

Why have readers taken to these writers? The novels are not formally innovative: With a few exceptions, these are straightforward whodunits, hewing closely to conventional models from the English tradition. Nor does their appeal depend on a "relentlessly bleak view of the world," as a writer for the London Times has put it. Bleak worldviews are not particularly hard to come by in crime novels, no matter what country they come from.

What distinguishes these books is not some element of Nordic grimness but their evocation of an almost sublime tranquility. When a crime occurs, it is shocking exactly because it disrupts a world that, at least to an American reader, seems utopian in its peacefulness, happiness, and orderliness.
added by elenchus | editSlate.com, Nathanial Rich (Jul 8, 2009)
It’s Mr. Larsson’s two protagonists — Carl Mikael Blomkvist, a reporter filling the role of detective, and his sidekick, Lisbeth Salander, a k a the girl with the dragon tattoo — who make this novel more than your run-of-the-mill mystery: they’re both compelling, conflicted, complicated people, idiosyncratic in the extreme, and interesting enough to compensate for the plot mechanics, which seize up as the book nears its unsatisfying conclusion.
The novel offers a thoroughly ugly view of human nature, especially when it comes to the way Swedish men treat Swedish women. In Larsson’s world, sadism, murder and suicide are commonplace — as is lots of casual sex. (Sweden isn’t all bad.)
The first-time author's excitement at his creation is palpable, strangely, in the book's sometimes amateurish construction. There are frequent long digressions in this big book (more than 500 pages) in which he laboriously fills in back-story details. Then there is the Vanger family; what might have seemed like a bit of fun gets out of hand as easily more than 20 people with the surname Vanger are mixed into the story. To his credit, though, he always regains control and restores momentum.
added by Shortride | editThe Age, Jeff Glorfeld (Mar 17, 2008)
At once a strikingly original thriller and a vivisection of Sweden's dirty not-so-little secrets, this first of a trilogy introduces a provocatively odd couple: disgraced financial journalist Mikael Blomkvist, freshly sentenced to jail for libeling a shady businessman, and the multipierced and tattooed Lisbeth Salander, a feral but vulnerable superhacker.

» Add other authors (46 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Larsson, StiegAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Bjørnson, ElisabethTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Giorgetti Cima, CarmenTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keeland, RegTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Keeland, RegTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kuhn, WibkeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kyrö, MarjaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mendelsund, PeterCover designersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vance, SimonNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Det hade blivit en årligen återkommande händelse.
It happened every year, was almost a ritual.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Män som hatar kvinnor ("Men who Hate Women"), 2005. English translation by Reg Keeland under the title The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, January 2008.
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Information from the French Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to the English one.
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Book description
Synopsis for the Dutch edition: 
"Twee tegenpolen, Mikael Blomkvist en Lisbeth Salander. Hij is een charmante man en een kritische journalist van middelbare leeftijd, uitgever van het tijdschrift Millennium. Zij is een jonge, gecompliceerde, uiterst intelligente vrouw met zwartgeverfd haar, piercings en tatoeages, én een uitermate goede hacker. Samen vormen ze een ongewoon, maar sterk team.

Mikael wordt benaderd door oud-zakenman Henrik Vanger. Veertig jaar geleden is de zestienjarige Harriët Vanger op mysterieuze wijze verdwenen en vermoedelijk vermoord. De zaak is echter nooit opgelost en inmiddels verjaard. Toch wil Henrik Vanger graag dat Mikael zich hier nog eens op stort."

Mikael Blomkvist, a once-respected financial journalist, watches his professional life rapidly crumble around him. Prospects appear bleak until an unexpected (and unsettling) offer to resurrect his name is extended by an old-school titan of Swedish industry. The catch--and there's always a catch--is that Blomkvist must first spend a year researching a mysterious disappearance that has remained unsolved for nearly four decades. With few other options, he accepts and enlists the help of investigator Lisbeth Salander, a misunderstood genius with a cache of authority issues. Little is as it seems in Larsson's novel, but there is at least one constant: you really don't want to mess with the girl with the dragon tattoo. 
Haiku summary
Journalist solves type
Of locked-room murder with help
Of the tattooed girl.
Author's premature
Death, good PR spark massive
Sales phenomenon.

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0307454541, Paperback)

Amazon Best of the Month, September 2008: Once you start The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, there's no turning back. This debut thriller--the first in a trilogy from the late Stieg Larsson--is a serious page-turner rivaling the best of Charlie Huston and Michael Connelly. Mikael Blomkvist, a once-respected financial journalist, watches his professional life rapidly crumble around him. Prospects appear bleak until an unexpected (and unsettling) offer to resurrect his name is extended by an old-school titan of Swedish industry. The catch--and there's always a catch--is that Blomkvist must first spend a year researching a mysterious disappearance that has remained unsolved for nearly four decades. With few other options, he accepts and enlists the help of investigator Lisbeth Salander, a misunderstood genius with a cache of authority issues. Little is as it seems in Larsson's novel, but there is at least one constant: you really don't want to mess with the girl with the dragon tattoo. --Dave Callanan

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:28:48 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

The disappearance forty years ago of Harriet Vanger, a young scion of one of the wealthiest families in Sweden, gnaws at her octogenarian uncle, Henrik Vanger. He is determined to know the truth about what he believes was her murder. He hires crusading journalist Mikael Blomkvist, recently at the wrong end of a libel case, to get to the bottom of Harriet's disappearance. Lisbeth Salander, a twenty-four-year-old, pierced, tattooed genius hacker, possessed of the hard-earned wisdom of someone twice her age--and a terrifying capacity for ruthlessness--assists Blomkvist with the investigation. This unlikely team discovers a vein of nearly unfathomable iniquity running through the Vanger family, an astonishing corruption at the highest echelon of Swedish industrialism--and a surprising connection between themselves--From publisher description.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

» see all 19 descriptions

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