lørdag den 3. oktober 2009

Stieg Larsson, The Girl who Kicked the Hornet´s Nest (2009)


The third and final volume of this Swedish trilogy begins where volume two stopped with Lisbeth Salander, the girl who nearly kicked the bucket. Are you ready for several hundred pages of excitement?

Again, Larsson does not try to hide his agenda: he wants to do more than write a crime story, this time by adding short sections about amazons, women who voluntarily leave the kitchen in order to fight.

The real action begins with Lisbeth Salander being admitted to Sahlgrenska Hospital in Gothenburg after the dramatic clash with her father, leaving both of them badly hurt. At the same time a frustrated Mikael Blomkvist in handcuffs rages against the police because they did not listen to his warnings about the danger of Robert Niedermann, a cynical, murderous juggernaut. With Lisbeth put out of action, Blomkvist must try to enlighten the police with regard to what really happened while they were chasing an innocent woman.

A few words about the plot: an extensive conspiration, carried out over several years by a group associated with Säpo, the Swedish security service. Mikael Blomkvist, Erika Berger, Dragan Armanskij and others fight to unravel it all to prevent Lisbeth from being committed to a mental hospital again.

There is no doubt that Larsson is a fount of knowledge within the areas he writes about, e.g. editing a magazine and uncovering political scandals, but sometimes he forgets to show, not tell. So what makes the reader swallow one chapter after the other, is the new and different Pippi Longstocking character, Lisbeth Salander, and a handful of other strong women who are allowed to fend for themselves without having to be rescued and held in hand by the male characters all the time.


Stieg Larsson, Luftkastellet der blev sprængt (2007).
Det tredje og formodentlig sidste bind i serien om Mikael Blomkvist og Lisbeth Salander. Næsten syv hundrede siders spænding.

Igen lægger Larsson ikke skjul på, at han vil mere end fortælle en kriminalhistorie, denne gang ved at indlægge afsnit om amazoner, altså kvinder som frivilligt forlader kødgryderne for at slås.
Den egentlige handling begynder imidlertid, hvor bind to slap: Lisbeth Salander bliver indlagt på Sahlgrenska Sygehus i Göteborg efter det dramatiske opgør med sin far, sønderskudt og tapet sammen med isoleringstape for at forhindre forblødning, mens lægerne kæmper for hendes liv.
Samtidig raser Mikael Blomkvist, iført håndjern, fordi det svenske politi ikke tog hans advarsel om, at de var på vej ud til Robert Niedermann, en kynisk morder i kampvognsklasse, alvorligt. Mens Lisbeth ligger brak, må Blomkvist i gang med en længere historie til politiet om hvad der virkelig er foregået, mens de har brugt tiden på at eftersøge hende.

Plottet i meget korte træk: en omfattende konspiration, udført over en længere årrække af en gruppe med tilknytning til Säpo, Sveriges hemmelige politi. Mikael Blomkvist, Erika Berger, Dragan Armanskij med flere kæmper for at trævle hele redeligheden op, før Lisbeth risikerer at blive tvangsindlagt på en psykiatrisk afdeling igen.

Stieg Larsson har tydeligvis stor viden om de områder han beskæftiger sig med, bl.a. at redigere et tidsskrift, afdække politiske skandaler mm, men af og til forklarer han næsten mere end nødvendigt (telling, not showing). Det der driver historien fremad, og får læseren til at sluge det ene kapitel efter det andet, er i høj grad Pippi Langstrømpe-figuren Lisbeth Salander, og en håndfuld andre, stærke kvinder, som får lov at klare sig selv uden hele tiden at skulle reddes og holdes i hånden af de mandlige aktører.

18 kommentarer:

Margot Kinberg sagde ...

Oh, I'm *so* envious that you've gotten your copy and had a chance to read it, Dorte! I haven't yet. Your review makes me want to get it right now. This sounds like a winner! I do agree with you, too, that it's important for an author not to overload the reader with too much detail. It doesn't sound as though it detracted from this book, but it is an issue...

Dorte H sagde ...

Margot: Well, one advantage of being a Scandinavian is that we don´t have to wait for the English translation.

Another advantage: we can also read the English ones when they come out first ;)

And I think that I should mention Larsson´s flaw (the tendency to tell too much), but as you gathered, I just devoured the book anyway.

Nille sagde ...

Som jeg skrev, så synes jeg faktisk, at den sidste er den bedste! Måske også fordi, man ved, at det er den endegyldigt sidste... nogle gange kan han, som du skriver, glemme sine læsere lidt - men det er utroligt velfunderet i det mindste.

Dorte H sagde ...

Nille: ja, så god underholdning, at man gerne tilgiver ham et par smuttere.

Ms. Bookish sagde ...

I have yet to read the first one (I have the first two). I really need to just start - I'm sure I'll be sucked in and finish the two in no time. You know, so I can start yearning for the third one, and looking out for any giveaways of it that I can find (I won TWO copies of the second one at two different giveaways - I was so determined!)

Marg sagde ...

I just bought this one on Friday. I am very much looking forward to reading it!

Dorte H sagde ...

Belle: yes, sucked in is probably how you will experience it once you get into them.

Marg: enjoy! And the third one is dramatic right from the start.

bookwitch sagde ...

Yes, I took a long time deciding I wanted to read them. Stieg Larsson's writing is a bit wooden, but you don't mind. You just read, because of the content. And because of Lisbeth.

Kerrie sagde ...

Does this one still need editing Dorte?

Petty Witter sagde ...

Thanks for that review, Dorte - it sounds like quite a read.
I'm interested to note the differences in covers between the English version and the Swedish version. I wonder why that is, appeal to different markets?

Dorte H sagde ...

Ann: what put me off in the first place was the title of the first book (Men who hate women). I had to read it though, as it was a gift from my children ;)

Kerrie: I don´t know exactly what you mean by still? I have only read it in Danish (the 2007 edition), and I think the book could have been improved if he had edited or abbreviated some sections with information about police work, publishing, conspiracies etc, but I like his style and see the book as very entertaining.

Dorte H sagde ...

Petty: I think your question was so interesting that I dedicated today´s post to Stieg Larsson covers. I don´t know why the covers are so different, but it is interesting to see that the British are closest to the Swedish ones.
It is also interesting that the English titles make it into a Lisbeth Salander trilogy.

Beth F sagde ...

I may have to order this one from London so I can get it sooner than later!

Dorte H sagde ...

Beth: yes, Salander is such a temptation. My children gave me the first (a paperback), and after that I couldn´t wait for the paperback edition so they had to buy the hardback edition for no 2 and 3 :D

Elizabeth Spann Craig sagde ...

I'm actually just half-way through "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo"...but it's fascinating. I wish I had more time to read! I can't wait to read more. What a shame his life was cut too short.

Elizabeth
Mystery Writing is Murder

Dorte H sagde ...

Elizabeth: I know what you mean. Work comes first. And often when I read, I feel I should be writing instead (or washing, cooking or cleaning). My life should be more manageable from next year, though, as I will have shorter working hours.

Bonnie sagde ...

Dorte..I am SO tempted to order this book now. I just finished the first two and want to read this one now! Did you find it a letdown when it was over knowing that it was the last book in the series?

Dorte H sagde ...

Bonnie: if it had been available at that time, I think I might also have ordered book three immediately after no two. But that is also because book two doesn´t really ´end´.

Of course I would have liked more books about Salander, but I knew that Stieg Larsson was dead so what I thought was ´what a relief he finished three and not just two´. Well, what I am trying to say is that a trilogy makes sense; it is a reasonable point to leave the characters.