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819 of 858 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo
I have just finished reading this book which was recommended to me by a friend. As someone who is not usually a crime fiction fan (I certainly never buy them), I was not very enthusiastic about it but had some curiousity because of the rave reviews it was getting in other areas also. I found the beginning of the book a bit tedious and was starting to think it was not...
Published on 28 Dec 2009 by Mrs. Jean Ross

13 of 14 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars good story poorly written
This is a good plot, a complicated mystery with several unexpected turns, an affecting romantic sub-plot between the two main characters, and some scary moments.

But it's written by a plodding nerd. The first half is deeply tedious, the second half is a bit better but all the way through we are given far too much detail about uninteresting brand names, leaden...
Published on 2 Jan 2010 by Chris Rust

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo By Stieg Larsson, 14 Jun 2014
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo
Stieg Larsson

Very few authors are successful in captivating the reader for the duration of their entire novel, Steig Larsson the author of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo manages to do just that, and leaves the reader longing for the revelation of the hidden past of one of the main characters. You won’t find amazing lines of literary genius; you won’t find profound poetic paragraphs. What you will find is a story so well written and captivating that you will not want to stop turning the pages of this wonderful mystery novel.

Larsson’s novel contains so much to debate and analyse, it is impossible to do this work justice in a brief review. The characters we are given to digest and contemplate are disturbing, intriguing and fascinating. Blomkvist, who is the journalist headhunted to investigate the disappearance of a teenager many years previously, is a strong character bursting to reveal the corruption in his homeland. He is a stable individual and so interesting to follow in his pursuit of the truth coupled with his endeavour to expose past corruption.

Salander, has got to be one of the most enthralling characters I have read in a long time. She has clearly endured dreadful abuse and hardship. Her amazing ability with computer hacking enable her to assist Blomkvist in his search for the truth. Salander’s character is so fascinating, every detail we read about her, increases the reader’s desire to find out more about her hidden past. Her relationship with Blomkvist is beautifully drawn out through the novel and Larsson cleverly leaves the reader yearning for the successful union of these two amazing characters.

The Vanger family simply epitomise The Arrogance Of Wealth. The contempt and hatred they hold for each other is mind boggling. Their inability to function as a family and display any sibling affection leaves them wanting. Henrik’s undeniable love for Harriet, is the only indication that any one in the Vanger wealthy industrial family is capable of empathy and compassion. The revelations of the torture chamber and Gottfried’s horrendous history of violations against women, not to mention, the abuse of Martin, his own son, are truly shocking.

Clearly Larsson desired to expose the many unreported crimes against women, and the character of Gottfried enabled him to do this weaving the convoluted callous acts of this monster to the reader. The reader is gifted with so many weird and not so wonderful relationships to be discussed within this warped and dysfunctional family.

The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo by Steig Larsson is a book that will stay with the reader forever. Larsson gives the reader a wealth of characters and personalities, coupled with raucous relationships to delve into. Although gruesome and sadistic at times, the novel keeps the reader enthralled throughout. The desire to keep reading this mystery flourishes with every page. It is a vibrant and evocative novel that will not disappoint the reader. I would highly recommend this novel, and I believe it warrants a score of 9+ out a possible 10. What a shame Steig Larsson has left this world, surely millions of readers like myself, are entirely grateful for the wonderful trilogy he has so generously left in his wake. Well done Steig Larsson and congratulations to the Translator on doing such a brilliant job….nothing was lost in translation.

Reviewed with honesty by The Mother Booker 2014
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Enjoyable reading with complex characters, 22 Aug 2009
Alison "Kindle Allie" (Derbyshire, UK) - See all my reviews
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After seeing this book recommended to me for some time I finally took the bait and bought the book. Initially I found it quite hard going, simply because there are so many characters (and so many with the same surname), a lot about the financial system and the added distraction of the unfamiliar setting and Swedish words. It probably took me about 25% of the book to get into it and have a better feeling for the characters.

There are some errors in translation but these are few and far between. There is also an error in the family tree where a Gregor is mentioned but he is called Greger in the text. Confusing, even more so because the husband of another character is also called Greger.

The descriptions of some of the crimes are quite graphic at times, so this is not a book for the more sensitive types. I found myself wincing at some of the descriptions!

I particularly enjoyed the complexities of the characters. Some reviewers of this book have critisised the inconsistency of Salander's character, but I thought it just made her seem all the more genuine. I for one am never confident 100% of the time, I'm sure we all have our insecurities! Blomkvist himself eludes to a reason for her personality (don't want to give anything away here!).

The book is relatively lengthy at 500+ pages but I enjoyed it all and thought the detail was really excellent. Some have commented that some of the more banal things that characters do in the book could have been omitted but I disagree - the normal behaviours such as Blomkvist's enjoyment of coffee and sandwiches(!) just helped to give a full picture of the person he is.

This is the first of a trilogy so will pave the way for further developments and increasing the depth of characters in future books. I will be reading the next book. Recommended if you enjoy thrillers!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Review of CD Audion version of the book - ONLY, 10 Oct 2009
Amazon Customer "Sussman" (London CA) - See all my reviews
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Other people will review the book to a much better extent than I can and will do a much better job, so I leave it to them.

My review rather refers to the quality of the Unabridge CD reproduction of the book, and the inferior abridged version. The is abridged version is not an option for me, I can never see the attraction in these abridged CD reproductions they lose `flavour', `colour' and lastly they seem to make little sense. While the full version, while more expensive is worth every penny.

Please be careful when choosing which version you what to buy as, on this site, it is easy to pick the wrong version.

My only negative about these audio CDs is:-

As person who likes to listen to these audio CDs more than once,the packaging does not lend it self to repeated use the packaging is poor and almost disintegrates on trying to open. I now have all three audio CDs and the quality of the `jewel' case has always been poor, which is rather sad. The box comes to pieces in your hands as you try to remove, or return a CD to the case.

The plus points are your listening to a 21st century classic thriller; the narrator is top notch, he gives you a nice feel to the story, without sounding 'dead pan'! lastly it's a story by Stieg Larsson, enough said?

Well it is worth buying, and the price now is OK, for my money its worth 5 out of 5 stars. Please please the CD makers of this product please change the design and make it more user friendly.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Ok but not brilliant, 28 Jun 2013
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First time i read from this Arthur and only bought it as it was recommended by my daughter (then i had to buy it as daughters are always right) its ok but too many people to get your head around and i got confused about who was who. However once i got into it i enjoyed it. Its still a read once book
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Very Good Book, 18 Feb 2011
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This book first came into my orbit when it was advertised on the TV. After a while I looked on Amazon to see what all the fuss was about and decided to order it.

I'm glad I did. I read it in two days and really enjoyed it. I felt the book kept you interested throughout, although I do agree with other reviews that it did seem to go up a gear after about 75-80 pages and the Wennestrom affair did seem to be stuck on the end, but if you read the book properly you will know that that was part of the contract that Blonkvist undertook, that information would be given about Wennestrom after the Vanger affair was concluded.

Great read. Have ordered the other books and eagerly awaiting their delivery.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A SWEDISH DRAGON's LAST THREE BREATHS OF FIRE, 17 Aug 2009
NeuroSplicer (Freeside, in geosynchronous orbit) - See all my reviews
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I was late in picking up the two first books of Stieg Larsson's trilogy and when I did I decided to leave them for the beach. I can now assure you that THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO is much more than a summer page-turner.

The story flows effortlessly yet is full of unexpected turns. Looking back one can only admit that, although he did not see it coming, the outcome was to be expected. No suspension of disbelief required here, the story could easily have been taken from news-reports. Larsson was a master of understanding human nature and life's minute nuisances.
What is more, this book reminded me of the good old classics that contained a healthy dose of moral lessons within their gripping story. Good literature should entertain as much as it make you think.

The only thing I regret is not being able to read Larsson in the original Swedish (always a handicap) but as far as I can tell the translation (by Steven T. Murray, under the nom-de-plume of Reg Keeland) is fluid and very well done. No awkward phrasing or translation artifacts that would gum up the experience. The book might as well have been written in English.

It is very unfortunate that Larsson died so young. He would have had a stellar carrier as a writer in front of him. Non the less, his Millennium Trilogy is what he will be remembered by.

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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Don't Understand The Hype, 28 April 2012
Having not read The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo when it first came out - I'm generally sceptic about instant successes - I asked a friend from work to borrow the book. She promised me that I would have a hard time putting it down. Turns out, this couldn't be farther from the truth.

We're introduced to Mikael Blomkvist, an economic journalist, and Lisbeth Salander, an anti-social girl with the investigation skills that would put to shame the greatest detectives. Mikael is hired by Henrik Vanger, an industrialist of now old age, who wants to know what happened to his great-niece, who disappeared 30 or 40 years earlier.

So, it seems, we're in for a ride! But, well, it's a boring and dull ride.

Starting with characters first. Many reviewers already pointed out that Mikael seems to be irresistible to women. Although it's not a thing that bothered me, it is true. My main gripe with him, however, is that he is not a great main character. He's just not interesting. After finishing the book I asked my friend what could she say about Blokmvist that wasn't a) that he drank coffee all the time, b) that he was a incomprehensible magnet for women and c) that he was a terrible father. The answer was "He is incredibly smart and a great leader, as you shall see in the next book". Smart, he is not. He is clueless throughout the majority of the book and, in the climax of it, he makes a great, great mistake that left me wondering what the hell did people see in this man.
As for Lisbeth Salander, she makes, initially, a compelling portray of the girl who just doesn't care about anything. This works well for some time. She can defend herself and be incredibly competent in her job as an investigator. But, later, it just annoyed me. I mean, she is probably the most unsympathetic character that I ever came across. She smiles some times, but it's always forced and not authentic. To her credit, I think she would be much more competent than Mikael and would solve the case in half the time, leaving me wondering why did Henrik go for Blomkvist when he had this great investigator seating on the side.
The other characters are either the women who want to be in bed with Mikael or men who hate women (which is the original title of this book and much more appropriate).

Now the story/writing. It is not good. The first half of the book (almost 250 pages) is slow, with not much happening. This portion could easily be removed and replaced by 50 or 80 pages. But if it happened, the author may have had no space left to write about the specs of apple computers, or the amount of coffee the characters drink, so he had to choose. The story does pick up in the middle - and this is the only reason I don't give the book 1 star - before it promptly falls back to another 100 pages of things that we don't care about. The books lacks fine editing and you have to wonder if it would have been a better read if it had been treated better during that process.

I noticed a reviewer who said that the second book has a better rating, thus making it better. Although I agree with the first part - it does have a better rating - I cannot agree with the second. Many readers who didn't like The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo will not continue with the saga and will not give a review for the second book, leaving more people who fall on the favourable side of the opinion to give stars to the book.

I thanked my friend who lent me the book, thus saving me some money. And for knowing if Mikael is a great leader or not, I will never know, seeing as I will not read any more books of the Millenium saga.
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25 of 29 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Descent story delivered with a total lack of suspense, 21 Feb 2011
As other reviewers have pointed out, the book takes forever to get going. The first 300 pages could easily be condensed in a 100. The author(s) throw a myriad of characters at the reader, burdening the mind with difficult names and relations, some of whom have no relevance to the story whatsoever.

In terms of writing style, the author shows no sense of suspense. I did not expect a Hollywood type screenplay, but the most eventful of moments are delivered in such a lukewarm, flat style that one can easily miss them if not paying 100% attention.

Not worth all the hype.
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89 of 105 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Doesn't justify the hype, 7 Sep 2010
Lendrick (London) - See all my reviews
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I'm an occasional reader of thrillers (Rankin, Paretsky and Block being among my preferred authors) given the attention this has had I thought I'd try it as one of my holiday reads this year. Having done so I'm a bit mystified by the attention it has received.

It not a bad book, the core plot around the disappearance of Harriet Vanger is very good and mainly well-handled even if the outcome is a little predictable. At points I was absolutely hooked by the story but at others much less so.

I found it difficult to get into, the prose is clunky (not sure how much of that is down to the translation) and the story telling leisurely - it's about 100 pages in before it really gets going. It then seems to grind to a halt completely about 2/3 of the way through. Before the Harriet plot is rather speedily resolved. There is then a lengthy and rather tedious coda to resolve the Wennerström sub-plot with which the book starts.

Much is made of central characters in the praise the book has had. I did warm a bit to Mikael Blomkvist over the course of the book - though his ability to bed every attractive female was irritating. However, I found Lisbeth Salander entirely unconvincing - a middle aged man's fantasy of a hacker. While her supposed technical wizardry was a bit laughable. Felt like the author has once read an article on hacking, but had no real understanding of IT.

It is interesting that the title has been changed from the original "Men Who Hate Women". Amidst the mostly slow paced narrative there is some pretty grim violence against women - a theme reinforced by the statistics opening each chapter. Some of the violence just feels gratuitous. If this is meant to have a feminist theme it too clumsily done to be effective.

Another review said this felt like a first draft of a novel, and I tend to agree. Some promising elements but too many flaws. I can see it could make a good film. But I won't be rushing to buy the sequels.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Overrated, 23 Sep 2013
I expected so much more from this book. I enjoyed the mystery section, but this did not get going until about 100 pages in and was solved with about another 100 pages still to go. What filled these pages was, I think, meant to set the scene for the other two books in the trilogy, but in this book it was unnecessary and created a feeling of anti-climax.
I was also irritated by the author's, the translator's and the editor's apparent inability to use past tenses properly,particularly the pluperfect.
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The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (Millennium Trilogy)
The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo (Millennium Trilogy) by Stieg Larsson (Hardcover - 10 Jan 2008)
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