I recently reviewed The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, the first book in the Millenium Trilogy. The Girl who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson is the second book in the the series. I found this second book, even better than the first which says a lot as I described the first book as spellbinding. The Girl who Played with Fire held my interest from start to finish as it was such a powerful and engrossing story. I find these books very hard to review so bear with me as I don't want to give away the storyline or any spoilers. To me, this is the kind of series that you need to dive into and not know what comes ahead.
My favorite storyline and character from The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo was Lisbeth a twenty-something pierced and tattooed young woman with a horrible past full of secrets. She is intriguing and mysterious and her mind works at a genius level including her computer hacking abilities. In this book, Lisbeth is the focus and the heart of the story as you finally learn much more about her childhood, her family and what her life was like growing up. Her story is haunting and it's amazing that one can survive through such trauma in one lifetime. Mikael a political and financial journalist who runs and co-owns a magazine called Millenium is now tracking a story that exposes the sex trade industry in Sweden. He discovers ties to members of Swedish society, business and even government. When he is closer to exposing this, murder and mystery ensue. Lisbeth is linked to the murders and Mikael is the only one who believes in her innocence. Lisbeth is drawn into this through her own curiosity and hacking skills once again and she is finally forced to confront details from her past.
There are definitely disturbing parts to this book as in The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo that are graphic and violent in nature so be forewarned if this is something that bothers you. The storyline was so amazing and intelligent that these dark aspects didn't destroy my opinion of the book. As in the first book, there was a lot of violence towards women and it seems excessive. The author tends to focus on human interest stories in which women are dealt with in underhanded and evil ways. I believe that his intent was to bring attention to this issue of the sex trade/trafficking issue as it is a global one.
The Girl who Kicked the Hornet's Nest is the third and final book in the Millenium trilogy. It is to be released in paperback in the U.S. at the end of October but it is unclear as to its availability. If anyone has any information about this, please share in the comments section. I am very anxious to read this final book in the trilogy even though I hate to see it end.