Mikael Blomqvist has been riding high ever since his expose of the Wennerstrom company in Millennium. During the last year Lisbeth Salander has been jaunting around the world and has ended up in the Caribbean, sunning herself and studying mathematics. They have not spoken to each other for reasons Mikael doesn’t know.
Millennium is approached by altruistic freelance journalist, Dag Svensson. Erica Berger and Mikael decide to publish a book of his exposing the sex trafficking in Sweden. In a round about way this leads to three murders that end in a nation wide manhunt for Salander (who has returned from her excursion). Mikael knows she is innocent and that he must find proof of this before the police locate her.
The case in this book intrigued me less than the Vanger disappearance from Dragon Tattoo. I rather enjoyed the cold case aspect of the first book. That said, that was the only part of the book that left me cold. The rest of the book is a mad dash from one event to another that leaves the reader breathless. I found myself gasping many times throughout the book.
What makes it so interesting, once again, is Salander. Lisbeth is the outcast poster child for our generation. She’s mad, she’s violent, she’s unwilling to compromise her ideals, and she’s completely vacant when it comes to trust. Still, she’s hella fun to read. I adore her. She perfectly crystallizes the idea that people, ultimately, are duplicitous – She maintains a strict privacy to the point of being a hermit yet she invades peoples private thoughts by hacking into their computers. She expects men to treat women well, yet she is suspicious that all men are out to harm women and protects herself any way possible. There’s one sentence in the book that sums up Salander very well – “Salander was the woman who hated men who hate women“. Salander may be all contradiction, but every action she performs is precise, and correct. Lisbeth is a perfect character.
One more book. One more damned MYSTERY book (“she said a dirty word!”). To be truthful though, had Larsson lived and written dozens of books following the misadventures of Mikael “Kalle” Blomqvist and Salander, I would probably have read all of them. I just love these characters so. The irony is had he not died would they have become the worldwide publishing phenom that they are? Who knows? One more book… one more book.
I can’t wait.
4.5 out of 5 stars.
– Follow the Reader –