Sunday, August 1, 2010

Steig Larsson

I just finished the second installment in the Stieg Larsson Millennium  trilogy, "The Girl Who Played with Fire."  I was introduced to the trilogy last year by a Norwegian acquaintance.  I was looking for a thriller to read, and she recommended the first book, "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo."  I had never heard of Stieg Larsson or about his immense popularity and the unfortunate controversy surrounding his death and estate.  She was surprised since his books had become bestsellers in Scandinavia, and the film, based on the first book, was a big hit.  I'm glad I followed her suggestion.  I loved the books.

The second installment answered some questions and left a lot unanswered.  I'm looking forward to the third installment, "The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest."

What can I say that hasn't been said before about his books:  they're a good read, they keep you on the edge of your seat, they have plenty of action, sex and thrills.  All true; but, aside from being first-rate story telling, the books also provide a glimpse into Swedish society.  Larsson manages to tell a good story that reflects society's view of sex, its treatment of women, and the influence of organized crime on the political system.   And for you techies, it's also a Cyber fiction book.

Stieg Larsson died in 2004, at age 50, after a heart attack, leaving three completed novels (and rumor has it that part of a fourth was found in his computer).  It's a shame that Larsson was taken from us so soon, but it's a gift that before his time ran out he managed to produce at least two first-rate thrillers, and perhaps three.  I'll know for sure when I read the third book, "The Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest."

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