A good story is marred by poor narration. Characters speak in variations of London accents -- a more than mildly annoying distraction. Place names were read as if they were phonetically spelled on the page - the rhythm of the language was non-existent. I soldiered on to the end, longing to hear the Swedish inflected English of my grandfather.
I enjoyed both of the books in this series. The characters are interesting and the story line complex enough to keep it interesting.
I loved the book, but the narration was so slow that it was painful. With an action thriller such as this novel, I think a different narrator would make sense. I will read the third book in the trilogy rather than listen to it.
I loved The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo so much that I downloaded this one as soon as I finished. Simon Vance's dramatic reading is the perfect compliment to Larsson's suspenseful and descriptive writing. There is intrigue, surprise, and humor. This story is a great stand alone but why would you not want to read the whole trilogy? This is a not to be missed listening!
Say something about yourself!
I was skeptical about even starting this series. I read some of the reviews on this particular book and saw that someone had posted a review saying that this book was Erotica. I have no idea what book they read but there was no "erotica" feel for me. It has a sex trafficing scenario so what else would you expect?. Looking forward to listening to the final book with a heavy heart.
I loved the story, with one exception. Larsson frequently jumps around telling the story from a number of character's point of view. I have no problem with this. However after the first sentence in which says the name of the person we are now following, he resorts to "he" or "she" rather than the name. And there are an extensive number of characters. I frequently found myself confused at who's story we were reading now. It is irritating to have to rewind and find that one second where the name was mentioned. Granted, this was meant to be read, rather than listened to, but it is not very good writing technique. I got the impression that Larsson was so deeply engrossed in his own story that he wrote he or she to save time, intending to go back and replace them with names but never did.
Otherwise the story was great, a little slow at the beginning but still engrossing to the point I did not want to stop listening.
It's remarkable to me that Stieg Larsson, a journalist with an enormous ax to grind, wrote such a compelling novel based first on one of the most arresting characters I've encountered (not to mention a host of well-developed secondary characters); then on a complex plot that keeps the reader involved through this and the next book; and, finally, on his angry attack on the various misdeeds of society and government. Many (many and many) a lesser writer would have fallen into the trap of reversing that order, putting the didactic message first. But Lizbeth Salander is Larsson's great creation, here, and through her, and her story, he is able to persuade his audience. I haven't read a word of his journalistic attacks on the evils he so hated and campaigned against, and honesty compels me to admit that I much prefer artistic to factual writing; but I'd bet almost anything that the positive effect of this book (and the last one in the trilogy) against those evils was greater than all those articles put together. Such is the power of art. And by so much are we diminished by Larsson's early death.
Opinions will vary as to Simon Vance's reading of this audiobook, of course, but I found it addicting. The only thing to get used to is the complete anglicizing of accents; yet Swedish place names are scrupulously pronounced. It's a minor quibble, perhaps, but something I never got used to. What's much more important is that Vance's characterizations are still sounding in my mind two are three books later (Brit accents and all!); he's a true professional. I've actually looked up a list of audiobooks he's read. Happy listening!