Madeline’s review of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (Millennium, #1) > Likes and Comments

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message 1: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell I want to read this so much!

message 2: by Sarah (new)

Sarah I put off reading this for so long because I didn't know how good it could be if it was $11 at Target, and because it's a book I've seen sold in airport newsstands. But I did end up reading it for book club, and I enjoyed it very much.

message 3: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Sarah wrote: "I put off reading this for so long because I didn't know how good it could be if it was $11 at Target, and because it's a book I've seen sold in airport newsstands. But I did end up reading it for ..."

Interestingly, it's so popular the US publisher is holding off on releasing the 3rd (and last, because the author dropped dead) book so people are paying $40+ for the London import at mystery specialty bookstores. Or maybe ordering from I bet the ebook'll be pirated a lot....

message 4: by Manny (new)

Manny Hey! I wanted to know exactly what Lisbeth ate for every meal (I was worried she was only ever going to eat Billys Pan Pizza). Similar remarks apply to her wardrobe. The chick's Aspergers, you know? Let's show a little tolerance about obsessive behavior, please.

message 5: by Madeline (new)

Madeline Don't get me wrong, I kept a chart next to me when I was reading this so I could mark whenever Mikael ate lamb chops for dinner (twice, once in cream sauce and once in red wine) or Lisbeth wore her leather jacket (almost always). It was also really important that we know she was wearing tights with red and green horizontal stripes for one scene in the book.

message 6: by Manny (new)

Manny Ah, you were just teasing me then. I'll relax.

It was also really important that we know she was wearing tights with red and green horizontal stripes for one scene in the book.

Indeed! The Pippi Longstocking theme!

message 7: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Heh, I picked that same quote in my (rather wild-ass) review....I thought the book was Deeply Flawed but Lisbeth was so awesome she cancelled a lot of the flaws out. I cut Stieg some slack because apparently he died right after delivering the third book and before the first one went to press, I think, so maybe he didn't have a chance to revise his work as fully as he might have....the second book was fairly disappointing, but I just got the third one in the mail from the UK and am hoping it revs back some. I'm sad we won't get a ten-book-long sequence with Sally and Kalle Fighting Crime.

message 8: by Madeline (new)

Madeline They should become cast members on Law and Order:SVU. How fantastic would that be?!

message 9: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Madeline wrote: "They should become cast members on Law and Order:SVU. How fantastic would that be?!"

That would be SUPERFANTASTIC. Lisbeth would hack into everyone's computer everywhere and solve crimes vigilante-style, while Mikael would sleep with all the women in the office and feel Bad about it.

message 10: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Aww, I liked the t-shirts, partly because it's such an Angry Young Girl thing to do -- I think I _had_ some of those t-shirts when I was sixteen. It was interesting because she's older but looks/acts younger -- I think part of the point is she's been treated like an infant by the state, to the point of declaring her incompetent. A dangerous infant.

message 11: by Michael (new)

Michael I was considering reading this then read Moira's post about the author's death so I decided to see how he died. He died before the first book was even published! He never got to experience the success of his books! Never got to read the luke-warm reviews from people like Madeline. Heh heh

message 12: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Michael wrote: "He died before the first book was even published! He never got to experience the success of his books!"

I really have to wonder what he might've thought about the English translation - according to the translator, who went under a pseud (I think _maybe_ because he was unhappy about what got done to his work, but he still gets lots of nice royalties) Larsson knew a lot about crime fiction and there were Americanisms and even US slang. The publishers made it sound a lot more formal and British, IIRC (will never get over 'anon').

message 13: by Madeline (new)

Madeline He never got to experience the success of his books! Never got to read the luke-warm reviews from people like Madeline.

All authors should be so lucky to die before having to read a Madeline Review.

Well, not all. Just the sucky ones.

message 14: by Moira (new)

Moira Russell Madeline wrote: "All authors should be so lucky to die before having to read a Madeline Review."

Like how people used to say their books had been Harriet'd. "Dude! You've been MADELINED!"

message 15: by DeAnna (new)

DeAnna I read your review before I read the book, and just now re-read it so I can say I agree with...everything you said. Are you going to read and review the second one?

message 16: by Madeline (new)

Madeline Honestly, I really have no desire to read the next couple of books in the series. I've looked at the reviews for The Girl Who Played With Fire and it sounds like, aside from some new information about Lisbeth's past, the book is mostly the same stuff as the first. I might decide to read it someday, but right now it's not a priority.

(sorry it took so long to reply to your question, by the way - Goodreads forgot to inform me that someone had commented)

message 17: by Sarah (new)

Sarah Actually, The Girl who Played with Fire and The Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest are both centered entirely on Lisbeth and her past and her badassery. If you like Lisbeth, you might like the other two books. Although, be warned: we still know what kind of phone everyone is speaking on, what kind of car they are driving, what street they are driving down, and what they ate for breakfast.

message 18: by Jennifer (new)

Jennifer Thanks for the added movie review. I was debating on renting it. I had similar feelings of this book, but the movie sounds great.

message 19: by Madeline (new)

Madeline I'd recommend it. It keeps the creepy, cold atmosphere of the book but gets rid of all the extra stuff that detracts from the central story.

message 20: by Marina (new)

Marina I loved the way you used the quote from the book to summarise your review. Dead on!

To sum up, I'm going to give the last word to the book itself, and quote a sentence that's actually a character talking about a book featured towards the end of the story - but it could easily describe Larsson's book:
"It was uneven stylistically, and in places the writing was actually rather poor - there had been no time for any fine polishing - but the book was animated by a fury that no reader could help but notice."


message 21: by Jillian (new)

Jillian Fantastic review, as always. I had no idea this was made into a movie! Now I need to look it up. My mom dumped these books on me so I felt compelled to read them. She's not a reader, so if she finishes something, I assume it's great. lol....

message 22: by Deno (new)

Deno Uhm, did you at least watch the American remake? I personally think it's better than the Swedish version.

message 23: by Madeline (new)

Madeline I have seen the remake, actually. Although I liked some of the changes they made (very very proud of Fincher & Co. for resisting the Hollywood need to sexualize their female lead), there were some other things that happened that I really didn't like. I still prefer the Swedish version.

message 24: by Saleem (new)

Saleem Khashan the story and life of the author amazes me, he writes three books and dies, that is the stuff fiction is made of

message 25: by Lezlee (new)

Lezlee Hays I have to say that I felt similarly to you regarding this book (though I did give it 4 stars in the end). However, I just got around to reading the sequel nearly 2 years after reading this one and I have to say that in terms of interesting plot, it is much better than the 1st. Lisbeth becomes much more interesting, and the author seems to get into a better rhythm with his writing. I still have a few minor complaints, but they are so minor I gave it 5 stars anyway. Just a thought.

message 26: by De (new)

De Thank you for the link to the review of the actresses. I'm not sure I want to see the american film. I haven't gone back to the 2nd and 3rd books, but may someday. Too many books I want to read. I much prefer Arnaldur Indrioason's Reykjavik Thrillers

message 27: by Natalie (new)

Natalie I've been debating on whether or not to read it before I see the film/read it at all...

message 28: by Anna (new)

Anna I love your review, this actually made me want to read the book in a way because it warned me of the bad stuff.

message 29: by Falak (new)

Falak Ibrahim Hey Madeline, this is probably the best (honest) review I've come across in quite some time.. There are expectations which we set up before starting with a book, but eventually get a bit sad when those expectations aren't met. And this doesn't always mean that the book is a bad piece..

message 30: by Auston (new)

Auston a review by a bad reader.

message 31: by Madeline (new)

Madeline And a hearty ppppbbbttthhhh to you too, sir!

message 32: by Elizabeth (new)

Elizabeth Aloe I agree with your review! The endless details Of computers and such. Bored me to tears....and I almost didnt finish. This book made me wonder if Larssen was just a pervert who needed to release by writing this stuff. The rape, the way Lisbeth is described, the ending...where did this come from? Anyhow, thanks for the was right on.

message 33: by Madeline (new)

Madeline I don't think Larsson was a pervert at all (for examples of a pervert who acted out his twisted fantasies through fiction, see American Psycho), but rather that he knew so much about this largely ignored issue that he really wanted to shock people into caring. That's the main reason I like the Dragon Tattoo series, despite its many flaws - like I said in the review, it's "animated by a fury that no reader could help but notice." It's like Larsson is saying, "oh, this scene makes you uncomfortable? Well it happens every single day to hundreds of women, and that is not okay."

message 34: by Linda (new)

Linda Larsson was trying to achieve a better society, working for gender equality. As a journalist he even started a new politic magazine, and focused on these things. He wanted to open people's eyes, as you mentioned. That's why I love these books, as well.

message 35: by Simon (last edited Jun 29, 2012 12:50AM) (new)

Simon I generally agree with your criticisms of "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo", since I thought it had all the ingredients for a good book of this type but they never really came together properly. It's good to hear that the movie apparently fixed most of those issues with the narrative structure, then.

That reminds me, have you ever seen the South Korean movie "Lady Vengeance"? It deals with many of the same themes as "Dragon Tattoo", though in a somewhat different way in addition to being one hell of a movie in general. Probably one of the most interesting movies about vigilante justice I've ever seen.

message 36: by Saleem (new)

Saleem Khashan I hate to say this but the movie was awesome

message 37: by Robyn (new)

Robyn I 100% agree with your review. I'm quite glad I didn't read anybody else's reviews before writing my own, since I've basically just regurgitated every one of your points, only less eloquently!!

message 38: by Cristina (new)

Cristina De leon I couldn't agree with your review more!!!

message 39: by Betsy (new)

Betsy Good review, especially using his review of Mikael's book as a review of Stieg's book - ha! And seriously, is this guy the master of going to bed with every woman he comes in contact with, or what? Such a cliche - the aging journalist sweeping every woman of every age off of her feet (except his wife, of course, who saw right through him and left). All in all, the book was entertaining and a good read while traveling. I was also bored to tears with the unnecessary descriptions of computer brands and Lisbeth's clothing.

message 40: by Madeline (new)

Madeline You really should see the Swedish version too (with subtitles, of course). The US version was good, but the Swedish actress who plays Lisbeth just blows Rooney Mara right out of the water.

message 41: by Callum (new)

Callum I agree with your review on so many points- and the quote from Mikel's book is really quite apt for The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo, good catch.

message 42: by Tim (new)

Tim Great review Madeline. I feel like a moron now for not seeing its faults. Guess I was blinded and seduced by the fury, living as I do in the country with the highest rape statistics in the world...

message 43: by Grainne (new)

Grainne Great review! I had the same problems with the book. It got too bogged down in the business bit and I just wanted to flick ahead. And the obsession with what Lisbeth had in her sandwiches seemed odd!

message 44: by Madeline (new)

Madeline The problem was that Stieg Larsson died rather suddenly, either right before or after the first book was published, so the entire series isn't as polished as it should have been. Apparently he intended for the series to be ten volumes long, but we only have the notes for the last few books rather than entire (unedited, filled with pointless details) drafts.

message 45: by Grainne (new)

Grainne Oh! I read that he died suddenly but didn't know the series was meant to be that long. You know, that would actually explain some of the pointless bits. A good editor could have pruned a lot of it and improved the book really. Will still probably read the other two...but wasn't as wowed as I expected. The Swedish version of the movie is on Netflix. For once I might actually enjoy watching the moview after the book!

message 46: by Jem (new)

Jem I preferred the third book to either of the first two.

message 47: by Grainne (new)

Grainne I'm kind of saving the third one. I've gotten to like the characters-don't want the series to end!

message 48: by Bonnie (new)

Bonnie Your review was a much better read than the book! Maybe you should be writing...

message 49: by Kumari (new)

Kumari I think we are just more discriminating because we've experienced lot of really wonderful literature, so very literally in comparison this is totally 'meh' or even 'blech.' people who aren't as acquainted might think this is Shakespeare and Shakespeare was shit. What do they know?

I love the premise the author chose to write about, I liked Lisbeth as a charcter with interesting and odd quirks but this book was boring as hell! I really tried, but after it put me to sleep for the 7th or 8th time, I fell back on the other knowledge that we voracious readers have: there are so many much, much, much better books to spend time with than this.

@Manny: haha to your first comment.

message 50: by Madeline (new)

Madeline Shakespeare was shit.

I'm sorry, I stopped reading after that part. What?

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