Saturday, February 5, 2011

Millennium Trilogy – Stieg Larsson’s Amazing Mysteries

I avoided these books because of their titles. They reminded me of Harlequin Romances. But someone at the office recommended them as a decent example of the mystery genre, and so I took the chance.

Well, I can say that these books have been responsible for the single largest ongoing sleep deficit of my life :-) … on no less than 5 occasions, I have seen the sun come up while reading these books in bed. And all this has occurred in about three weeks. Wow …

Now, I read everything on Kindle, so I managed to buy the entire trilogy for about the cost of one new hardcover book. But Amazon has even better deals on some formats … for example, the first book – The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – sells for under three bucks new in trade paperback form right now.

The second book – The Girl who Played With Fire – is also cheap in that format. But so is the Kindle edition. And the Kindle edition of the third book is cheaper than all the others new.

Now, the second and third books are really one book split in two. The story runs smoothly through the break and maintains its pace without a hitch.

I’m not going to bother reviewing them, though, since there is already so much written about them. But my take is that these are some of the best stories of the genre.

Being set in Sweden gives them a fairly exotic feel for those who have generally been forced to read endless books by American authors. But more importantly, these books never seem to lose pace at all. One investigation after another pits good against evil and you are never quite sure who will win.

I can’t wait to see the movies now. I know they are in Swedish, but that’s not a problem. It’s just much better than rereading the whole trilogy so soon. I need some sleep :-) … There is also a miniseries with the same main characters reprising their roles. Sounds very interesting …

One more thing though … I consider it an absolute tragedy that the author, Stieg Larsson, died right after delivering the trilogy, at the very young age of 50. Here’s a quote from an article in the Sunday Times archive that outlines the depth of the tragedy …

Larsson, with his round glasses, chubby features and springy thatch of hair, died from a heart attack after climbing seven flights of stairs to his office because the lift did not work.


He was known to boast about only one thing … his work ethic. And perhaps that’s something to take away from his untimely death.

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