The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Thoughts   The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (translated from Swedish by Reg Keeland), Vintage Crime/Black Lizard 2009, 644 pages.

MOTIVATION for READING:    I only brought two books with me on the trip ‘home’ for our pre-Christmas Christmas trip and I was done with both before I got to my parents’ house.    This is the only book that Mom had lying around that she was willing to part with and that I hadn’t read  (and was on my tbr – lucky me)

WHAT it’s ABOUT:     Hasn’t everyone read a review of this already somewhere in the blogosphere?    Not that that means you know what it’s about, I guess.    I never remember and try not to even read the back jacket if I have it on my list to read. After a financial reporter is sentenced to prison for libel, he is offered a job to find a missing grandniece in return for more dirt on the guy he libeled.   (That’s a verb, right?)    Along the way, we get into a chase for a psychopathic serial killer and our good guy is teamed with the girl who happens to be quite a resourceful investigator.   She has tattoos.

WHAT’s GOOD:     Like most popular thriller books, I always get swept away with the mystery and it reads fast.  The character’s are very interesting and likeable.   I was surprised how pro-feminism it was.

WHAT’s not so GOOD:    I have no complaints about the translation – I didn’t really notice many awkward spots in language.    Only one time I couldn’t decide if I was grateful for the explanation of the how Sweden handles guardianship or thought it too much and out of place, almost like an opinionated aside.     I’m also not quite sure why the girl with the dragon tattoo got the title of this, but I liked the character.   I just might have to read the next one in the series (but if you don’t like series books like I don’t, you can be assured that it is not a continuance;   this book is stand-alone and doesn’t drop off with any cliffhanger, fyi)

FINAL THOUGHTS:   I enjoyed it and was most grateful that it kept me entertained while Southwest Airline was doing their utmost to pi$s off my husband with their atypical but quite unprofessional handling of the delays on our flight home:  changing gates without telling anyone, being told “It’s not my job” when asked what is going on, and just continual “Only 15 minutes more” messages for about an hour and a half after boarding the plane and waiting in line for de-icing.



p.42    ANATHEMA  “She made coffee,… but conventional office hours or work routines were anathema to her.”

a thing detested or loathed

p.78    EQUIVOCAL   “You couldn’t get more equivocal, could you?”

open to two or more interpretations; or of uncertain nature or significance

p.183    GALLIMAUFRY   “Every family had a few skeletons in their cupboards, but the Vanger family had an entire gallimaufry of them.”

odds and ends: a motley assortment of things

For more Wondrous Word Wednesdays, visit Kathy at her BermudaOnion blog.


18 thoughts on “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

  1. I’ve had this book for too long and really need to read it. I’m glad you had it to pass the time while dealing with airlines – what a pain! Great words – I can’t even figure out how to pronounce gallimaufry, let along use it correctly.

    1. Yes, I was excited to come across gallimaufry because it was so new to me. The others were words I feel I should know but tripped me a bit for some reason.

  2. historyofshe

    I had to put this one down, but I’m excited to pick it up again. I’m sorry about all your travel woes– that’s so annoying!

  3. I really did enjoy reading this book a couple of months back.

    Apparently, the Swedish title was Men Who Hate Women. While I’m glad that didn’t remain the title, in a way, I was left wondering why the title was The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. Kept reading to see if the tattoo had any significance, and… it didn’t really seem to.

  4. Lisbeth becomes much more prominent as the series progresses. My review of the 2nd book will post right after the new year…although it’s not much of a review. More like a rant about the titles.

    And book 3 is a continuation of book 2 (it picks up RIGHT where the other one left off). If you’re going to commit to it, you might want to wait until book 3 is readily available!

  5. How amusing to come across the word gallimaufray in a Swedish novel 😉

    I am glad you liked it. I think it is really good, especially the character of Lisbeth Salander.

    Merry Christmas!

  6. Gallimaufry sucks. It’s not what I (or Stieg) wrote. Any weird English you see in these books is courtesy of the Scottish editor. Please don’t blame me. Forsooth, see thee anon!

    1. HI!!!!! I’m quite excited to have you visit here. I would be glad to blame that Scottish editor. This word DID give me pause. I like it, though. I like ‘forsooth’, too.

  7. Pingback: Update Notice (TGWTDT MAP!) « Care's Online Book Club

  8. I am reading this book for the January meeting of the Partners of Professors book club I started. From the way bar prep is going, this will be in the ONLY book I read in January 2010. I am glad that you liked it and I am hoping to enjoy it as well!!

  9. Cool review! It made me realize:

    (1) I need to read this book.
    (2) I need to sign into goodreads and clean-up my shelves.
    (3) I had thought anathema meant something entirely different.


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