Tuesday, November 8, 2011

The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest

 by Stieg Larsson 
 translated by Reg Keeland

 read within:
 The Girl Who Played with Fire                   19/10/2011 - 2/11/2011
 The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest       2/11/2011 - 8/11/2011
 probably 35 hours straight reading, or less.


If I were to described the books in three words, those would be them. These two books are full of action all the way and have a faster pace in comparison to the first book. However the style of writing is still the same, where I wrote in the first review, that it's similar to Mario Puzo's.

The book continues  approximately a year after the first book and recaps what happened to the main character, Mikael Bloomkvist and Lisbeth Salander as they follow their separate ways. The action began when the Millennium, the company Bloomkvist worked in, was approached by a journalist with a story on prostitution and sex trafficking in Sweden. It was a sensational piece, which Millennium decides to publish. As they work to finalise the story and was about to finish it, the journalist and her wife were killed. Salander's character came into play when the police found her prints on the crime scene, hence the chase began. What happened afterwards was a multitude of event that risk to uncover a 30 year old secret and Salander's background.

Sounds cliché? Well yes, I felt the same after rereading my synopsis and I must apologise as I don't do the book justice. Anyway the book might have a similar outline to other thriller/investigations but what I like about it that it has a few different view/narration such as the journalist, the police and the genius hacker who is the victim. The story also unfolds very fast and rarely have slow moments, yet the investigations seem detail enough to be logical. I could hardly find events or circumstances in the book where they appear incredulous, you know when the author feels lazy and introduces some miracle, though the book does have improbable moments but not impossible ones. In short, the books seem believable.

The language of the book is intermediate with a few new vocabs but they are unobtrusive. Again, the translations was very good that I feel as if I was reading an original book.
As for the young readers, the books contain adult scene and reference which are not explicit. There are gore but the writer only tells as they are needed and didn't dwell on them, a note for the weak-hearted readers. Other than that, I think the books will appeal to any readers.

The books were fast and I had read them back-to-back, which helps since the third book follows seconds after the second book, hence I lumping the review of both books into one. In my opinion, the writer would have also bundled them together, other than the fact the second would then become double the size of the first book. Plus, a trilogy seems much cooler, I think.

Buy the books.
Get them in three, much cheaper.