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71 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant closing - but not closure.
With this, the third and final part of the utterly brilliant Millennium trilogy, Larsson brings to a close the compelling story of, what must surely be, one of literature's most compelling heroines, Lisbeth Salander. As said elsewhere, Larsson ties up all of the loose ends clearly visible at the end of the second book and, as such, this is really not a standalone book...
Published on 1 Oct 2009 by still searching

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183 of 206 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A page turner - after 600 pages
If by any chance you are reading this review wondering if you might get a taster of this much talked about trilogy by diving in at the end, my advice is simple: don't. 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' was a brilliantly original start to this series, and introduced us to one of the most compelling anti-hero creations in Lisbeth Salandar. The second volume - 'The Girl Who...
Published on 14 May 2010 by M. Harrison


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183 of 206 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars A page turner - after 600 pages, 14 May 2010
By 
M. Harrison "Hamish" (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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If by any chance you are reading this review wondering if you might get a taster of this much talked about trilogy by diving in at the end, my advice is simple: don't. 'The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo' was a brilliantly original start to this series, and introduced us to one of the most compelling anti-hero creations in Lisbeth Salandar. The second volume - 'The Girl Who Played with Fire' - lost much of the sophistication of the first, and was a lesser book for it - but actually managed to be even more gripping. This third volume could not be more different.

It might have been titled 'The Girl Who Got Lost Between The Covers', since our heroine Salander is present for only around twenty percent of its gigantic 750 pages. Without the benefit of the first two books this volume would be utterly bemusing. The scene-setting and recapping takes around three hundred pages - with Larsson introducing a seemingly endless cast list of spies, policemen and women, journalists and officials. For Swedish readers this may be more satisfying, since he appears to be fictionalising modern Swedish history through conspiracy. But for us it is largely bewildering.

And how we miss Salander. Such is the power of this fictional creation that during her brief appearances the book roars back into life. Sadly however she doesn't become the central figure again until around 600 pages in - and it is only then that the book truly becomes a page turner. Happily Larsson recaptures the vulnerable, complex Salander of the first volume, and again makes this dysfunctional Aspergers girl compelling and adorable.

But while we wait for Salander, and the book, to capture us again, Larson actually creates two further ballsy female characters, one of which proves the love interest for Larsson's alter-ego, Mikael Blomkvist. Larsson attempts to give levity to this approach by dropping in occasional and flimsy one page factual interludes about the role of the female warrior in history. It's a creaky device - and he needn't have bothered. The fact is, it's refreshing to have strong women at the centre of a thriller, and there is no doubting Larsson's ability to create powerful female characters.

Most Amazon reviews are ecstatic - but that must surely be a measure of the power and originality of this trilogy, and not of this book. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest would have made little impact had it had been the first in the series; and if looked at on its merits it makes an adequate but ultimately disappointing last.
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71 of 80 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant closing - but not closure., 1 Oct 2009
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still searching (MK UK) - See all my reviews
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With this, the third and final part of the utterly brilliant Millennium trilogy, Larsson brings to a close the compelling story of, what must surely be, one of literature's most compelling heroines, Lisbeth Salander. As said elsewhere, Larsson ties up all of the loose ends clearly visible at the end of the second book and, as such, this is really not a standalone book but a continuation. It is essential reading for Larsson addicts but like all addictions it will never be enough to sate the appetite induced by reading the first of the series. Gobble up this one just like its predecessors - sadly, there ain't plenty more where they came from!

Larsson's writing was obviously motivated by powerful emotions reflecting his views on certain social ills but I never felt, as I have with certain other writers, that I was being preached to. The books are moving, exciting, intelligent, compelling and superbly written (and, I imagine, translated) but above all, entertaining. The whole experience of reading all three is so affecting that the structural faults, most obvious in the second in the series, simply didn't matter - to this reader at least. Yes, I did get slightly tired with the too frequent references to women warriors from history and the utterly redundant sub plot of Berger's cyber stalker but was able to overlook these relatively minor irritants in view of the fact that there are just too few writers of such excellence around who can sustain the interest of their readers over 1600 or so pages and therefore his passing is truly to be mourned.

Now I'll wait some time to get my 'fix' and then begin with 'dragon' again.
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114 of 130 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great ending, 29 Sep 2009
By 
A. GILL "ag55" - See all my reviews
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The sad thing here is that the author Stieg Larsson is dead. At the end of the book i
felt like i wanted/needed a sequel, but realised it could never happen. Its the same
feeling experienced by the end of the second book, that excruciating cliffhanger.

As you'd expect Lisbeth Salander is in fact alive, albeit taking a bullet to the head
and being in intensive care. The same people who declared her mentally ill and sentenced her
to that instituion want her to go back there. They make her take the fall for two murders and
also the attempted murder of her father.

But Lisbeth is ready to fight back. The journalist Mikael Blomkvist and his researchers at
Millennium magazine provide invaluable help for her to prove her innocence and identify
the corrupt politicians that have allowed the vunerable to become victims of violence and abuse.

In my opinion it feels like a continuation of the second book rather than stand alone novel.
As a result its vital to read the other two books to understand the story and characters.

After about 100 pages or so the book takes off. Your subjected to new characters incredibly fast in
an attempt to explain the conspiracy against Lisbeth. The pace never gives up, its a genuinely
exhilirating read. Its a great ending to the trilogy, and it will no doubt leave you wishing for
that little bit more. Thank you Stieg Larsson.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Proof That popular Books Do Not Have To Be Poor Fare, 19 Jan 2010
By 
K. Petersen "Ken" (Hemsby,UK) - See all my reviews
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When I began this trilogy of books, I was sceptical; critical acclaim upon the scale that these works had received, often leads to disappointment. In this case, I have not been let down once: this final instalment rounds off all the major threads of the story and, yet again, six hundred pages fly past. It is quite an achievement to write three thick tomes and not lose the pace once.

Larsson's characters are always consistent to their attributes: it must have been tempting to subsume Salander's anti-social attitudes when she finds herself before a court of law; but no, he maintains her shortcomings and the character remains true.

One of the satisfying sidelines of reading these books has been in trying to understand the author: the heroic journalist, Blomkvist, is clearly an idealised self portrait. His women are all 'good guys', they are often physically stronger than the men, and always morally superior: even Blomkvist is blamed for his lack of concern for the women he beds - ironically, by the married Berger who has an 'open marriage' which seems to have only one opening!
Larsson's interest in the Swedish secret service is also fascinating; whilst this fable is clearly all fiction, one does wonder if he is extracting a certain revenge for stories that might have crossed his journalistic desk and which he was unable to follow through. Sadly, his untimely death in 2004 means that there will be no more novels through which to hone these observations: a great pity.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A satisfying conclusion to Larsson's Millenium Trilogy, 25 July 2014
By 
This review is from: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest (Millennium series Book 3) (Kindle Edition)
It has been several years since I read the first two instalments of Steig Larsson’s Millennium Trilogy, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played With Fire. I had begun reading The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest but had always left it unfinished and only recently when thinking about unfinished trilogy’s did it begin annoying me that never did I get round to following through the story of Larsson’s alternative and feisty heroine Lisbeth Slander.

Although written as a trilogy I found that the first novel, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, could have been a standalone book due to the slightly isolated subject matter whereas books 2 & 3 were very definitely linked and followed on more directly from the other. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo reads as a murder mystery whereas The Girl Who Played With Fire and The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest are more politically driven and seek to raise questions over the ethical dealings of the Swedish Government.

I’m not quite sure why I did not complete this book during my initial attempt at reading it some years ago, I was literally hooked on it this time around. I had to do a fair bit of reminding myself who was who and perhaps because of it’s translation from Swedish to English I found many of the character names to be similar and I had to keep reminding myself who was whom and whether they were a good or bad guy.

That aside this is a wonderful novel. Picking up immediately after book 2 we find Lisbeth being rushed to hospital grievously wounded and facing several criminal charges against her, not to discount her psychopathic father being in the hospital room next door. Trying to help her, old friend and Millenium journalist Mikael Blomkvist begins to undertake all kinds of espionage style dealings and from there it’s very much about mapping out who is going to be victorious in either destroying or saving Salander.

It is gripping, fast paced, engaging and although Lisbeth is in no way a traditional heroine we root for her the whole way through. Her lawyers examination of dodgy psychiatrist Telborian was one of the most gripping pieces of writing I’ve ever had the pleasure of devouring.

It’s really no wonder this trilogy has become so highly regarded, it is collectively wonderful to read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars here's one for the conspiracy theorists, 12 April 2010
By 
Singingg (Southport UK) - See all my reviews
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This is the final book in the MILLENIUM series. If you've read the first two - The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl who played with Fire - you will know what to expect as it continues the story of Computer hacker Lisbeth Salander and investigative journalist Mikael Blomqvist. This story is one of corruption in high places and treachery towards Blomqvist as he tries to unravel the web of deceit surrounding the rather introverted Salander since she was 13 years old. I am not going to give the story away, as it would spoil the reader's enjoyment as the plotting unravels chapter by chapter in a clever and plausible way against the implausibility of the situations the characters of the book find themselves in. Suffice it to say it all comes together in the final chapters in a most satisfactory way, Blomqvist finds true love and Salander is vindicated, the baddies get their just desserts and all loose ends are tied (hopefully the blood was all mopped up too).

Although the book could be read without reading the first two and still make sense it would be better to buy all three and clear the week so that they could be read all in one go - staying up till 3 in the morning if necessary - these are books that demand to be read. The story is slowed down in parts by unnecessary descriptive passages and the "product placement" of various Swedish consumer goods and services can become irritating, however these are minor pinpricks one can rise above.

it is pretty obvious from the way the stories build up that Stieg Larrson intended to write more books around these two main characters. Unfortunately the tragedy of it all is that he succumbed to a fatal heart attack soon after he had delivered the books at the publisher. Here's hoping that he left enough research material for his partner to continue the stories.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars grand fanale, 5 April 2010
I first learned about the three titles having been translated into English towards the end of last year and that they were originally delivered at the same time by Stieg Larsson to the publisher in Sweden. That Mr. Larsson died suddenly and never had a chance to experience the pleasure of a best-seller sensation around the world is sad but what's more sad is that as I read this third book in the series I realized that these would be the last words I would read that were written by this author who taught me a bit about Sweden and who can really tell one hell of a story. If you have stumbled on this title before reading the other two please stop and find the first two starting with "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" followed by "The Girl Who Played With Fire" then, and only then start this book. By no means would I want to give anything away in this book but to describe my sincere pleasure in reading all three titles and say that Larsson kept me turning the pages well into the wee hours of the morning. My only reservation was that I knew that when the book was done then that would be all from Larsson. He certainly doesn't rush the story for which I'm most grateful and he takes time to fill in the background enough to allow the reader to appreciate the complexity of the interrelationships between government officials, private parties, and the criminal world.

I recently learned that there are 200 pages of a fourth book by Larsson out there somewhere and you can be sure that I'll be in line like millions of others when this title is released.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars "We're no longer in a battle with a gang of criminals, this time it's a government and department.", 23 Mar 2010
By 
Mary Whipple (New England) - See all my reviews
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The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets' Nest is a fine conclusion to the Millenium Trilogy, tying up the loose ends that have carried over for three novels and kept viewers around the world panting for the next installment. Though the novel is complex, it is the best and most intriguing of the three-and highly rewarding since it builds on all the action that has gone before, further developing the characters we have come to love. Lisbeth Salander, the focus of all three novels, is hospitalized and kept in isolation for virtually the entire six hundred pages here, but she is a looming presence throughout, and when it becomes clear that she will have to face trial for some of the murders in The Girl Who Played With Fire, Mikael Blomqvist, a mentor and friend, finds a way to unleash her formidable, secret skills as a hacker.

Lisbeth feels isolated, unable to trust, and she refuses to have any contact with Blomqvist, the investigative journalist and founder of Millenium Magazine with whom she once worked as a computer expert. He is still fond of her and still keeps all her secrets, even from his sister, Annika Giannini, the advocate who will be defending her against murder charges. She has serious problems with anger as a result of her confinement to a mental institution from the age of twelve to fourteen due to the evaluation of famed psychiatrist Dr. Peter Treborian, who is actively working to have her recommitted. Her father, Alexander Zalachenko, aka Karl Alex Bodin, a Russian defector during the Cold War and a vicious sadist, is recovering from wounds just two rooms down from Lisbeth at Sahlgrenska Hospital.

As Blomqvist investigates the circumstances surrounding the crimes in which Lisbeth has been involved, he is absolutely certain that she should never have been committed. Why, he wonders, do they care so much about her, and why was it so important that she be committed to a secure psychiatric facility at the age of twelve? Others are also investigating these crimes-and Lisbeth herself: the Goteborg Police, who found Lisbeth and Zalachenko near death at the end of the previous novel; the Stockholm Police, who are investigating other crimes involving both Lisbeth and Zalachenko; Richard Ekstrom, a prosecutor who has declared Salander to be "a vicious psychopath"; the Swedish Security Police (Sapo), for whom Zalachenko once worked; and the "Section for Special Analysis," a tiny group spun off from Sapo which is virtually unknown except to its own few members.

Larsson spends the first two hundred pages setting the scene and revisiting the action of the previous two books. The action is vivid and detailed, and as the makeup of the Section for Special Analysis unfolds, and glimpses of governments, past and present, emerge, the reader discovers that people once thought to be part of one group are also part of another. Intrigue in the private lives of the characters and within Millenium Magazine, Svenska Morgon Posten, (Sweden's largest daily newspaper), Milton Security, the legal system, the police, and the government's security organizations, keeps the reader constantly challenged to keep track of the details which make this novel so satisfying. The final resolution is a bittersweet experience-hugely rewarding because the important issues are resolved, but immensely sad because there will be no more books in the series. A grand finale to a terrific series. Mary Whipple

The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Vintage)
The Girl Who Played with Fire (Vintage)
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23 of 26 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars There's good news and bad news, 26 April 2010
By 
Peter J. Gasston (London) - See all my reviews
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The good news is, that this is *much* better than the second book in the series (which has a plot so ridiculous that the characters in the third book constantly make reference to how unbelievable it is).

The bad news is, you will have to read the second book before this one, because the story takes place immediately after that book and there are no concessions made to the new reader.

This is longer than both previous books, but doesn't feel too slack - although there are a couple of side-stories that have no bearing on the main story, which could perhaps have been dropped without anyone realising. The story moves along at a good pace (in the main) and always keeps you interested in what's going to happen next.

I suppose my main gripe is that there's very little feeling of peril; the protagonists are constantly one step ahead of their opposition, and it moves towards the climax with little in the way of genuine surprise.

Still, it completes the trilogy well (and leaves a few dangling clues for further books in the series, should the publishers decide to get someone else to write them).
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb * Un-put-down-able *, 5 April 2010
I live in the USA and as this book isn't yet published here, I ordered it in hardcover from amazon-uk. Such was my fervor for this Millennium series that I HAD to read this third book IMMEDIATELY and hang the cost. The first two paperbacks left me longing for more. The character of Lisbeth Salander is frickin' AMAZING: a fascinating, damaged, genius hacker, grappling with a lifetime of horror. And although she has a very hard exterior, one roots for her every step of her journey through the three books. "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo" is the first book I've ever read through the night. I began it at 6 p.m. on a Saturday evening and read straight through to Sunday. Stieg Larsson is a master storyteller who weaves myriad threads of plots and characters into a clear and thrilling tapestry. Larsson's disgust for corporate and political corruption and the men who hide within those paradigms, and then their justified comeuppance, is most gratifying. The violence in the books is very graphic and to be honest, I skipped through some of it because I can't stand horrible stuff happening to good people; but those with stronger stomachs won't have any problem with the details of abuse and skirmishes. It's a tragedy that Mr. Larsson passed before he knew what a global sensation his books have created; one can only be grateful for the stellar work he left behind. I can't wait to see the films.
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