I recently read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (TGwtDT), I was surprised to find that I liked it. I’m a picky reader, I tend to avoid stuff that I can find on a shelf in a Wal-Mart, mostly because a lot of that stuff is just crap. I want to read writers that can tell a story and create characters that are believable and relatable, not just churn out some crap that will sell to the masses and get a movie made based on it (i.e. Twilight series).
I was very hesitant to read TGwtDT because it was “critically acclaimed” and Hollywood felt the need to make it’s own version of it. However, I was pleasantly surprised that I couldn’t put it down (or actually, close my laptop as I was using my Nook app). The characters are complex and make you want to keep reading to find out what makes them tick. The story is layered and interesting, it keeps you guessing. Larsson manages to keep two distinct plotlines interwoven and connected. It doesn’t get bogged down by the sheer amount of details, which is a surprise. One other aspect of this book I was wary about is that it’s a translation and it takes place in a country I know absolutely nothing about. I didn’t feel like I was an outsider though, it’s written in a way that makes the reader feel familiarity even though it’s completely unfamiliar (at least for most American readers).
When I first started reading I didn’t understand why the book was titled The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the character of Lisbeth Salander isn’t exactly what I would normally consider the main character. However, it’s clear by the end of the book that she is the focus of the series. She is an interesting character, at times you relate to her and at times you want to hit her with a brick. I was completely enthralled with her, I wanted to learn more about her and understand what makes her tick.
I can now understand why such a big deal was made over who would play her in the American version of the movie, this is a character that can make a career. She is not a character for a faint hearted actress. I’ve watched the Swedish version of the movie and I love the actress they chose to play Lisbeth, she’s perfect.
Enough about the movie, I can honestly say this is one of the best books I’ve read. It gets under your skin and makes you think about life and the people around you, which to me is the goal of any good book. I now must finish the rest of the series.