I enjoyed this a lot more than Girl with a Dragon Tatoo. The story becomes interesting quickly and holds your attention. Lisbeth is a very intriguing and endearing character. There are sexual references but they don't become too graphic (I've read worse in romances) although yes, there is a small section about two girls having a friendship that includes sleeping together now and again. Simon Vance does a superb job with the various characters, I really enjoyed it and am looking forward to listening to Girl and Hornet's Nest.
Gee - I did not get a narrated version of the first book: Dragon Tattoo -- saw the movie. Had I known that Simon Vance had an English accent I might have thought twice about buying this -- it's probably just me -- I love an English accent as much as any uncouth Yank, but this is a Swedish story! Mr. Vance has a superb repertoire of voices -- and he needs all of them for this windy tome -- however the English tone and mannerisms of the voices somehow annoy me. It's difficult to hear Lisbeth talk like a Dick Francis jockey -- she is dark, mysterious and moody, and the voice rendition -- well, for the umpteenth time, the accent doesn't work for me with any of these characters. It's a deal breaker -- won't be buying #3 for my MP3.
I read some of the reviews and understand why some more conservative readers would have a hard time with the first few chapters of the book. However, one of the major themes is preconceptions about alternative lifestyles and this book really makes you think about "good" and "bad" people in society.
I read this entire book in one weekend (my house is now spotless). It was incredible and kept me on the edge of my seat all weekend. I encourage people to open their minds and read this book.
I am completely shocked by the 2 previous reviews!!! 1 person calls this "erotica" and another is obviously homophobic. Are we listening to the same book? I found nothing sexual in the first 7 chapters at all!!! Then further on, only a few parts eluded to sex (the most sexual thing written was "she kissed her"). There is absolutely nothing sexually gratuitous at all and what is mentioned is definitely important in defining the characters and propelling the story forward! I can't possibly imagine what people who are squeamish and homophobic could read without getting offended, perhaps a child's book would be more up their alley. But even that would probably offend those readers (however if you are looking for a fantastic tween book I highly recommend "The Graveyard" by Neil Gaiman.) Quite frankly the amount of sexual stimulation (yes I said stimulation) in this book is G, or quite possibly PG rated if the child is 12 or under.
This book, like his first one is well written and a page turner (what would the proper verbage for audio be here?) I enjoy Stieg Larsson's storytelling so much that this is the first time I have read/listened to 2 books by the same author in a row. The characters are compelling, the mystery intriguing, the descriptions are nauseatingly detailed and the storyline is fascinatingly intricate. I enjoy this book so much that I actually take my ipod out of my car and listen to it at home. I'm hooked!!!
Read them in order to realize the fullest character development. Very well done. Kept me intrigued the whole way through. English translation works 99% of the time. 7 kroner = 1 dollar.
Stieg Larsson's writing is thrilling enough for repeated readings; his books are less "who done it" than the amassing of psychological tensions between well-developed characters. I think of Salander's integrity when I need a reminder that it is okay if I am unlike others; I try to borrow this fictional character's strength and not care when I feel devalued and belittled. Larsson's career in journalism and dedicated fight for social justice provide insightful perspectives. His death gives me a phantom limb for the insights I will not have and the characters I will not think of when I need extra strength.
The "venestrom affair" (from book 1...why does everyone in Sweden know about this "affair"...not a case, or a scandal, or anything else...only an "affair"), colt 45 magnum (no such thing exists), the crazy attention to the detail of every single computer one of the characters happens to glance at or walk by (400 MB of RAM with a blah blah blah processor...who CARES?!). The F-word as a primary verb, adjective, and noun. An obsession with all aspects of sex. This writing style gets really old in this second book by Larsson. I found myself rolling my eyes constantly. Finally, the translation to English is by someone from England, so Italian boxers get a Scottish accent.
Ok, I know that sounds like an ill-considered review. Although I enjoyed the plot and I will now move on to the third book, I grew weary of Larsson's style and attention to irrelevant detail. Detail in writing is important, but detail about every stupid computer's hard drive, brand name, and model is just distracting and annoying.
Overall, if you listened to or read the first book, you have to move on to this one, and I have no choice but to listen to the next one. They are fun books with decent plots, but I had really expected a lot more given the reviews and ratings of these books. Not the kind of book I would ever re-read (unlike Last of the Mohicans, Dark Tower series, Lord of the Rings, Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance, Atlas Shrugged, or Born to Run). Pretty decent suspense/mystery/thriller though.
I really enjoyed this series of books. This last was seemed to leave too many loose threads, unresolved story lines. It makes me wonder if the author intended to write a 4th book before his death.
a great sequel, it was interesting seeing some of Salander's past. I was just as enthralled with this book as the first. I love Vance's narration as well ( I dont know how horribly I would have been pronouncing some of names of characters and places on my own).