Customer Review

12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars More Sex, Some Drugs & a little Rock 'n' Roll, 9 April 2011
This review is from: The Girl Who Played with Fire (Millennium Trilogy Book 2) (Paperback)
In this instalment of the Millennium Trilogy, our heroine is accused of a triple homicide and the evidence against her is compelling. However, not everyone is convinced of her guilt and her friend and erstwhile lover attempts to prove her innocence and save her from the horrors of her past. Larsson's second book of the Millennium Trilogy is undoubtedly better than his first. Nonetheless, the hyperbole of many of the reviews still fails to match the reality: this is a good, but certainly not a great novel.

The main problem with The Girl Who Played with Fire is Larsson's lack of attention to detail. It's not that he didn't include the detail that would, ordinarily, make the fiction more believable (Salander's preferred brand of pizza for instance), it's just that so much of what he did include is inconsistent with his characters or is simply wrong. For example, it's incredible that someone with a photographic memory can forget where she lives (p.63); the Sicilian is a defence for black and not an opening for white (p.143); and why would one of the world's finest computer hackers be amazed by how easily the media obtains confidential documents (p.349)? Such criticism might be perceived as petty, particularly in light of Larsson's engaging prose, but the author obviously coveted such accuracy and even attributed it as a character trait to one of his main protagonists! Furthermore, other authors of this genre have produced so much better, one needs only to think of the early works of Patricia Cornwell to understand what Larsson was trying to achieve.

A second (although, minor) complaint about Larsson's work was his proclivity discussing his own preferences and prejudices through his fiction. At times it's not clear whether Apple or Ikea was Larsson's main sponsor (or perhaps it was Billy Pan Pizza) and he was clearly obsessed with sex - any type of sex. This book covers the gamut of human sexuality (sadomasochism, lesbian, gay, straight - it's all in there), much of it adds little or nothing to the story and, as a result, it becomes tedious.

Of course I'll read the final instalment: it's lightweight fiction that requires little in the way of intellectual commitment and is a welcome interlude between more demanding reads (oh, and I already own a copy!).
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Showing 1-1 of 1 posts in this discussion
Initial post: 3 Feb 2014 19:51:39 GMT
Mrs J Pryer says:
The worst distraction and causing unbelievable irritation is why the storyteller feels the need to imbue the various characters with Northern or Cockney accents. Initially amusing it very quickly becomes grating especially when the Swedish pronunciation is also included. Such a ridiculous affectation adds nothing to the storyline and simply serves to detract from the overall enjoyment of the plot. Surely this audio cd was edited although given the final result seemingly not !
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