Like a friend of mine put it the other day, the saddest part about finishing The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Amazon affiliate link) isn’t that we’ve reached the end of yet another great story.
No, the hardest part to accept is that we will never, ever get to experience the anticipation of another release by the late Stieg Larsson, the Swedish-born author who rocketed onto the literary scene posthumously with his Millennium Trilogy.
And, if I’m honest with you, knowing that one of my favorite authors is delivering another (hopefully) brilliant story that will keep me turning pages late into night is one of life’s great pleasures, which means there is now one less pleasurable thing in my future. Sad.
Fortunately, Larsson went out on top.
This book takes up where The Girl Who Played with Fire left off: Lisbeth Salander, everybody’s favorite anti-social bi-sexual hacker, is holed up in a hospital with a bullet lodged in her brain, thanks to an altercation with her estranged father.
Meanwhile, intrepid reporter Mikael Blomkvist is up to his usual tricks, drinking massive amounts of coffee while trying to fight off women with a stick at every turn. When he’s not bedding his latest fling, he’s helping Salander beef up her defense for her upcoming court case where she will be forced to stand trial for the attempted murder of her father, all the while trying to piece together the story of a shadowy clique buried deep inside Sweden’s security police.
What happens outside of this overarching storyline is best kept between the covers for those who wish to read it. But suffice it to say, Larsson brings together all of the ingredients of the story in a way that would make a master chef proud. Rarely does anything feel out of place within the book. Rather, there is a very organic nature to the way in which certain elements of the story appear, as outlandish as they may seem on the surface, which is what drew me to the series in the first place.
It certainly is a tragedy that Mr. Larsson will never be able to realize the fruits of his efforts. But judging by what I can only imagine was the creation of characters near and dear to his heart, perhaps the time he spent toiling away on his books late into the night was reward enough. We’ll never know.
What I do know, however, is that we, as readers, should be thankful we had the opportunity to share in his story.
Tags: stieg larsson