Funny things happen when the electricity goes out. A quiet takes over. Things that make a natural noise are louder. There’s no TV. No lights. The air seems so still that at first it’s a shock to figure out something to do. But after digging in a drawer to find my flashlight, I settled in the corner of my couch and cracked open Stieg Larsson’s The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
I heard a lot about this book – from the untimely death of its author to the buzz now in Hollywood about the American film version (Daniel Craig has just been announced to play the male protagonist Mikael Blomkvist). But all the news didn’t do much to put this book on the top of my list. In fact, I waited a long time to finally dive into it. Honestly, I can blame the power outage for my motivation.
The book is interesting for sure. For the two people who read this blog that might not know already, it takes place in Sweden and there is a definite rhythm to the language. Larsson doesn’t spend a lot of time in descriptive narrative. The exposition is not obvious, which is difficult to achieve, but there is a large amount of info to keep straight, making it a bit cerebral. Also, there is very little characterization. It’s extremely hard to determine who to care for or if you should even bother.
This is not a happy book. It’s dark. Gloomy. There are some ugly twists and turns in the plot and the pacing. Reading it in the dark probably didn’t help. But I’ve added the Swedish film version to my Netflix queue and am anxious to see the adaptation.