Book Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo

January 15, 2016 Audio Review, Book review 17 ★★★★★

I feel like I’m one of the last people in the world to read this book.  And I had a physical copy and also an audio copy but somehow I just never felt in the right zone to read it.  Until my husband read it one day and was so enthuastic about it that it made me want to see what all the fuss was about.

Book Review: The Girl with the Dragon TattooThe Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
Series: Millenium, #1
Published by Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group on September 16th 2008
Genres: Mystery & Detective, Thrillers
Pages: 480
Format: Audiobook
Source: Purchased
Buy on Amazon

Murder mystery, family saga, love story, and financial intrigue combine into one satisfyingly complex and entertainingly atmospheric novel.
Harriet Vanger, a scion of one of Sweden's wealthiest families disappeared over forty years ago. All these years later, her aged uncle continues to seek the truth.

He hires Mikael Blomkvist, a crusading journalist recently trapped by a libel conviction, to investigate. He is aided by the pierced and tattooed punk prodigy Lisbeth Salander. Together they tap into a vein of unfathomable iniquity and astonishing corruption.


My final though on finishing the book which I have taken from my Goodreads status is: –

“That was epic! Ok. It’s not perfect as the start is slow and there is a lot of not very interesting data about a financial scandal. But after that it was fab and I couldn’t possibly give it less than 5 stars.”

I’ll be honest if I didn’t have so many people encouraging me on to read this book, I might have given up as the start really didn’t enthral me.  And that would have been a HUGE MISTAKE.  So if you are someone else who hasn’t read this one yet then I’d encourage you to pick it up, have patience with it and it will reward that patience with an story that is intelligent and captivating.

It’s a story about the investigation of a missing girl but it’s so much more than that.  It’s a story about violence, about abuse, about cover ups, about injustice.  It’s a story about complex characters that you can’t help think about when you aren’t reading.  It’s a story that you won’t forget.

And ohh those characters!  They are quirky and sprang to life hollering and screaming from the pages.  Lisbeth is now one of my favourite characters ever. I love how kick ass she is. Literally kick ass, she is fierce and will get revenge if you wrong her.  And she won’t feel an ounce of remorse for gaining her pound of flesh.

“Unlike other girls in the class, she never backed down, and she would not for a second hesitate to use her fists or any weapon at hand to protect herself. She went around with the attitude that she would rather be beaten to death than take any shit.”

The other huge thing that strikes me about this book (and the entire trilogy) is that I have never read another book like it.  The story is as original as they come and I really had no idea what might happen next.  There was also a lot of humour which did balance out some of the overly detailed passages for me.

Overall, I feel if you like crime fiction, then it’s a must read.  Just be prepared to lose hours and hours of your life to this trilogy coz when it hooks you in, you won’t be able to stop until you have finished the lot!


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17 Responses to “Book Review: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo”

  1. Lark

    When this book originally came out I didn’t want to read it because of the ugly cover. (I know, pretty shallow of me.) But then everywhere I went people were reading this book, so I finally decided to give it a try. And I was hooked. It’s one of those books that you can’t put down.
    Are you going to read the others? I didn’t like the second one, but I thought the third one was really good.
    Lark recently posted…Got Dreams?

    • trish

      Oh I make that call all the time based on covers of books! 😀 I’ve read the whole trilogy and loved it. Like you book 2 wasn’t my favourite but it was still pretty great! I don’t know if I’ll read book 4 though, my husband read it and said it didn’t fully capture the essence of the characters. Have you read it Lark?

      • Lark

        I haven’t because it wasn’t written by Stieg Larsson and I just wasn’t sure anyone else could capture the brilliance of his writing. You know?

    • trish

      You need to read it Rachel! And believe me I know exactly what you mean about the start, I was honestly intimidated and bored. BUT THEN it hooks you in and is so good, you won’t be able to read fast enough!

  2. Laurel-Rain Snow

    This book was one of the first I read on my Kindle in 2011…and I was happy I didn’t have to hold a hefty book. I agree about the somewhat tedious financial data, but Lisbeth was truly captivating.

    I also saw the movie.

    I haven’t read the other books, though.

    I was relieved to finally get on your blog, as all last weekend, I kept getting a message about the server, and wasn’t allowed on. So glad it is fixed, whatever it was.
    Laurel-Rain Snow recently posted…AUTHOR’S HOME PAGE

    • trish

      Lisbeth is amazing, I love her character so much and she is so complex that I always trying to figure her out. She is truly unforgettable! I need to go watch the movie now, I was holding off until I had read the books, as we do!

      Thanks for trying to visit me! My hosting company was attacked by hackers so the site was down for 3 days. Thankfully I didn’t have to do anything but I missed my blog while it was out of action.

  3. Jade @ Reading With Jade

    Ah, I’ve recently gotten in to audiobooks and have been looking for some books that translate well in to that format. Also, I love crime fiction!

    When this series was first highly talked about I was keen to give it a go but then totally forgot about it, then I saw the film adaptation of the first book and I needed to read the books! I have yet to get round to them. I’ll definitely be giving them a go via audiobook once I’ve finished up my current reread of Harry Potter via that method – I thought familiarity was a good way to start with audiobooks.
    Jade @ Reading With Jade recently posted…The Wolf Wilder by Katherine Rundell

    • trish

      I found the audiobooks worked perfectly here, the narrator is excellent and they are definitely good value for money as each book is so long!

      My next purchase on audible is going to be the Harry Potter books and I can’t wait to reread them via audio. Hope you are enjoying them and I agree rereading via audio is a great way to get into audiobooks.

  4. Joann Downie

    That was one of my all time favorites, and I was bored at the beginning also, but I figured I would keep reading, and was glad I did! I also gave it 5 stars on goodread!!

    • trish

      That’s the advise I got too Brandee and it really is worth remembering. I can’t recommend it highly enough when you want an absorbing and totally original crime fiction to read.

  5. S. J. Pajonas

    I’m so glad you read this! Would you believe this was the very first ebook I ever read? I remember that I had just received my first Kindle for my birthday in 2009 (six years ago yesterday) and that was the first book I bought and read. I blew through all 3 books rather quickly and really enjoyed the whole series! Glad you enjoyed it too. 🙂
    S. J. Pajonas recently posted…It’s My Birthday! So Have This For Free…

  6. Dawn obrien

    ooh, it’s ages since I read the trilogy, I really enjoyed them, something a bit different and I thought Lisbeth rocked too! not sure if I’ll read the latest one written by someone else tho?

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