Sunday, 4 October 2009

Book of the Week - Stieg Larsson, The Girl who kicked the Hornets'Nest

This week I have would like to recommend “The Girl who kicked the Hornets'Nest”, the final book in Stieg Larsson’s Millenium Trilogy. These books have taken the crime fiction world by storm, and have become bestsellers across the globe. Larsson was a revolutionary socialist Swedish Journalist who died before any of these novels were published. There has been considerable coverage of the problems which arose from the absence of a witnessed will – Larsson’s estate went to his father and brother, with nothing going to his long term partner, highlighting a major problem with Swedish inheritance law. There are rumours of a possible fourth novel on Larsson’s laptop, which is in the position of his partner, but it seems likely that these three books will be his complete fictional output.

If you are a fan of crime fiction and haven't yet encountered these books, start with the first (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo), which I recomended back in September 2008. At that stage a first edition could be found for around £20, but at present, the cheapest on sale on the internet is just under £400, with other copies up to £1000. This is a good example of the very rapid rise in values of some modern first editions, which of course may not be sustained. If your only interest is financial, now might well be a good time to sell, when interest in the series is high with the publication of the third volume. However, it seems likely that the trilogy will be recognised as a highpoint in crime fiction in years to come.

"Salander is plotting her revenge - against the man who tried to kill her, and against the government institutions that very nearly destroyed her life. But it is not going to be a straightforward campaign. After taking a bullet to the head, Salander is under close supervision in Intensive Care, and is set to face trial for three murders and one attempted murder on her eventual release. With the help of journalist Mikael Blomkvist and his researchers at Millennium magazine, Salander must not only prove her innocence, but identify and denounce the corrupt politicians that have allowed the vulnerable to become victims of abuse and violence. Once a victim herself, Salander is now ready to fight back. "

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