The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson

Albert: I suggested this book because I tried reading it before but had to stop halfway through when a scene really traumatized me, though I no longer remember what that was. But I do remember I was entertained by the book and I was curious to see what I had found so traumatic. Turns out it wasn’t nearly as traumatic this time around, but it also wasn’t as entertaining.

The storyline follows two protagonists: Blomkvist, a disgraced journalist who is hired to investigate the apparent murder of the great-niece of a former tycoon and Salander, a young, quirky girl who is a ward of the state due to her social incompetency, but also happens to be a brilliant investigator. The main issue for me was trying to keep track of all the minor characters. However, the main characters were all forceful personalities in their own way and were intriguing to read. As with all decent mystery books, the ending was a surprise, but only borderline satisfying. Think of this one as a mystery book with a heavy bent on violent rape and sexual torture. Rating: B

Kevin: While reading, I was pretty nervous that I would miss some little detail that would wind up being crucial to the plot, but I wasn’t nervous enough to read every sentence with extreme scrutiny. I like that the characters are well-developed and face some intriguing moral dilemmas that often involve comprising their own worldviews. The story dragged at times, especially when there was a lot of dialogue; perhaps the mystery element was a little too heavy for a newcomer like me. Overall, I feel like The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a good introduction to the crime novel genre. Rating: B

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