Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Steig Larsson

I finally did it. I finally completed the Millenium Trilogy.

It shouldn't be that difficult-- it's only three books, after all. It's just that it's such a struggle to get to the good parts of all three books that it maked me almost too frustrated to go on. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest sometimes seems more like a treatise on Swedish politics and legal system than any sort of mystery/action/airport novel at all.

After Lisbeth Salander's failed attempt to kill her father, she lands in the hospital with a bullet in her brain. Journalist and apparent lady magnent Mikael Blomkvist once again strides forth into the underbelly of the government to proved Salander's innocence and bring down an insidious government agency. Seems exciting, right? Well, the only things that got me engaged in the novel were Erika Berger's stalker, Salander's hacking skills on a Palm, and the paragraphs on women warriors before each new section of the book. The rest was an exercise in restraint as I tried to keep my thumb from pressing the "Next Page" button on my Kindle at warp speed. I honestly don't care if Blomkvist is some sort of Swedish Don Draper and journalistic savant. Seriously, I never want to hear about it ever again.

Now, I have to be fair here. The novel might have been much better written in its original Swedish and its eccentricities much better understood by a native Swede. The phrase "Knights of the Idiotic Table" might have sounded so much less ridiculous when read the way it was meant to be read. And I also have to tell the truth: if Larsson had lived to write another book, I might have read that too, if only to satisfy my curiousity about Camilla Salander. I'm ashamed.

If you're still interested in reading this book, Amazon has a new thing where you can preview the whole first chapter right on your computer. I'm not shilling for Amazon-- I just thought it was a cool thing.


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