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The girl with the dragon tattoo

Author: Stieg Larsson

ISBN 978-1-84724-254-2 (English)

Publication date: 2005

Translated by: Reg Keeland

Pages: 480


Harriet Vanger has been missing and presumed dead for 40 years. But then why does her great uncle, Henrik Vanger, still receive one framed flower every year on his birthday, from her?


Sweden may be the land of the midnight sun, blondes and the furniture manufacturers, Ikea, but Stieg Larsson’s book is anything but the pink picture painted by my opening line. “Män som hatar kvinnor” or “Men who hate women” (known as “The girl with the dragon tattoo”)  is an intricate book that exposes the murky and horrific underbelly of the fictitious Vanger corporation where almost every character above 70 is a misogynist who resorts to incarcerating, raping and mutilating women as a release for their sadistic sexual tension.

The story follows disgraced journalist, Mikael Blomkvist who has recently lost a libel case against one Wennerström corporation and takes on the Henrik Vanger’s offer of investigating the death or disappearance of his grand-niece, Harriet Vanger over 40 years ago.

Along the way his path crosses that of Lisbeth Salander, an asocial punk-type who also happens to be a brilliant hacker. As the unlikely duo team up to uncover the truth about Harriet Vanger’s death or disappearance, they also uncover the secretive, misogynistic and sadistic vile life of a member of the Vanger family.

It is very difficult to summarize the book without giving away all the intricate yet shocking details that would be revealed as one reads the book. The book itself isn’t a spectacular work of literature as obviously it has been translated from Swedish to English and literal translation always fails at several steps. Also, the beginning and the end of the books pale in comparison to the fast paced middle but are quite paramount (obviously!).

It is worth a read and I look forward to reading the second in the series “Flickan som lekte med elden” or “The girl who played with fire”.

0 14 November, 2010 Books November 14, 2010

About the author

The name may sound funny and weird and it spills over his character too. He prefers to keep his identity secret and we respect his choice. Thanks to a moment of “what an idea, sirji” we have him on-board our panel and don’t ask me more about the idea, it is our kitchen secret but his writings are here to enthrall you.

View all articles by Sir Pumpkin Longshanks


  1. Debosmita

    I have read all the three books in the series and I have never read a more exciting book in recent times. I agree that they may not have the best literary content, but the plot, characters, pace and narrative more than make up for it.

    I strongly urge all to read the Millenium Trilogy. Chances are that even you, like me, will find them simply unputdownable 🙂

    1. Sir Pumpkin Longshanks

      It’s not really the best review as I’ve left out SO MUCH!!! But I generally try to fit in a review in 2-3 paragraphs if I can as long wordy essays are something that I don’t like and avoid.

      So if I can’t read long, wordy articles, I don’t expect anyone else to read mine — so I keep it short and sweet and truncated!!! Thanks for your comment!

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