Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Book Review: The Girl Who Played With Fire, by Stieg Larsson

The Girl Who Played with Fire has a stunningly intricate plot. I loved this book. I’ve heard others say there are too many characters, it’s too slow, there are too many details….but I simply devoured this book.  I like a book (sometimes) that requires you to pay attention. This wasn’t a book that I could read during commercials. I don’t think I could have listened to this as an audio book either—I needed to flip backwards a few times.

This is Stieg Larsson’s second book about Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist. This really isn’t a series—you can read this book without having read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but that story is mentioned several times in this book, and several of the characters reappear.

Salander has cut herself off from pretty much everyone. Blomkvist tried unsuccessfully for several months to get in touch with her before giving up. Salander, being the expert computer hacker, keeps tabs on him through his computer, as well as some other characters from the first novel. I like the way the reader doesn’t know what Salander’s motives are. We are figuring it all out right along with the characters in the novel. In this novel, Salander is accused of killing three people. Two of them are associated with Blomkvist because of an article he is publishing on sex trafficking, so he is once again tangled up with Salander.

As I said, the plot is complex, so I’m not going to explain much here. I didn’t have problems keeping track of the characters; they all played an important role, so I was able to follow them. I didn’t feel there were any unnecessary plot lines, with the exception of the beginning when Salander is in the Carribbean. But even that part was enjoyable. Larsson can write about anything and make it interesting. 

If you liked Dragon Tattoo, you should read this. If you like a complex, intelligent mystery-thriller, you should read this. I’m looking forward to The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, and visiting Salander and Blomkvist again.

Published by Knopf, 2009
Copy purchased for my Kindle
503 pages (qualifies for my 350 Page Book Challenge!)

Rating: 4.5/5

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  1. I think I'm one of the few people who hasn't read any of the Stieg Larsson books, but I will add this one to my TBR list. I love mystery-thrillers with a complex plot.

  2. I loved the 1st book of this series & have seen the first 2 movies, both really well done. I know the story of this book but still would love to get on it & finish them off. Glad to hear that you liked them :)

  3. I liked the first book, but it took me longer to get into it despite having watched the movie. However I blazed through this second installment, and I'm now loving The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest. It helps, having watched the movies, but I really feel that the second and third books are faster paced. I'm so sad that Larsson passed away before he had a chance to write all the books he planned in the series.

  4. I have the first book in this series and have been meaning to start it forever...I need to get with it!!

    Kristin@ My Bookish Ways


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