I'm not entirely sure what I expected from the internationally popular mystery, The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, but it wasn't what I got. I thought, based on the title, it would be kind of arty, off kilter, or exotic (though the setting in rural Sweden is, admittedly, pretty neat) but it's fairly straight forward, though quite complex in plot.
It's half in the tradition of “cozy” mysteries and half a pretty gruesome tale of severe sexual abuse. It's light and dark in turns and while I'm not sure that I truly loved it, it is a page turner.
A journalist and a social pariah become, through a semi unbelievable turn of events, partners in crime. Their assignment: to uncover the truth behind the decades-old disappearance of a young girl from a seemingly secluded island. Along the way, they unearth sinister secrets far more grisly than they expected.
It's at times ludicrous, and the language is a bit clunky, but that could just be the translation. Author Steig Larsson, a Swedish journalist turned novelist, (sadly) died right before his book was published and became a world wide sensation. Undoubtedly a film version will follow.