For those of you who've never cracked one of these books - you really need to. This is especially true for women and writers.
My god, what stories these are. No, they're not perfect. Just go to Amazon and read the many negative one and two star reviews about there being too much detail about what the characters eat, the computers they use, the way the hero Blomkvist sleeps around (didn't bother me at all), and so many other (small) points that some readers didn't like.
That's not what these books are about. They're about men who hate women (which was the title of the first book before the publisher changed it to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo).
Salander is a female character like none I've ever read. She's not beautiful, sexy or witty. She's a computer hacker, stunningly brilliant when it comes to mathematical formulas. More importantly, she's been a victim of men in power - a victim who refuses to be victimized. She does what many might call immoral things, yet she is the most moral character I've ever met.
The way she extricates herself from her sadistic and creepy guardian Bjurman in the first book The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was awesome. I certainly didn't see it coming, and trust me, I've guessed the end of every Agatha Christie book and other murder mysteries/thrillers since I've started reading the genre. I honestly thought she was going to kill the slimeball. (Hell, I was having my own fantasies about that). Not Salander. She found the perfect punishment for the SOB. During that scene, I was pumping my fist in the air and shouting, "You go, girl!"
Blomkvist, a crusading financial journalist, isn't only her lover at times. More importantly, he's her friend in a world where she sorely needs one. This is a relationship I believe all women want with a man. Someone who listens to you, believes in you and will do all that he can to ensure your safety even though the rest of the world thinks you're weird and unattractive. Yeah, he's my kind of guy.
It's a damn shame Larsson died after writing these tales. His work speaks to me as a woman who wants to be treated fairly, to be understood (not dismissed/abused/exploited) and who is more than a means for a man to make himself feel important.
As a writer, I'm amazed at his intricate plotting, stunning cliffhangers and the connection between Salander and Blomkvist. I didn't want these stories to end...ever.
Do yourself a favor - read these books. Savor them. Mourn the loss of a very great writer.
“Heat with Heart”
DEEP WITHIN ME (June 25 - Samhain)
ILLICIT INTENT (5 FLAMES - MY READING OBSESSION)
ILLICIT DESIRE (4 STARS - ROMANTIC TIMES)
SENSUAL STRANGER (BOOK OF THE YEAR 2010)
DEEP, DARK, DELICIOUS (HOLT MEDALLION AWARD OF MERIT)
Amazon author page: https://www.amazon.com/author/tinadonahue