Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest is the third and final book in the Millennium Trilogy. It is an excellent novel and such a page turner that I had a hard time putting it down. It is a 500 page book with some pretty dense language, but I was able to finish it in only a couple days.

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest starts directly after the events of The Girl Who Played with Fire. Lisbeth Salander is fighting for her life the hospital after being shot in the head at the end of the last novel. Although Lisbeth is wounded and locked away for a large part of the novel, she is a formidable foe. Her allies Mikael Blomkvist, Annika Gianni (Blomkvist’s sister and Lisbeth’s lawyer), Anders Jonasson, and Dragon Armansky work together to help free Lisbeth from murder allegations and to expose the massive government cover-up that has led to Lisbeth being abused for much of her life. Exposure of this conspiracy will not only vindicate Lisbeth, but will rock the Swedish government.

Larsson wrote this novel with meticulous detail, which I have read complaints about in other reviews. I like the detail and still was able to briskly read through the novel. It was a bit slow at the beginning and the end, but overall a good read.

Was anyone else scared by the scene of Zalachenko trying to get to Lisbeth’s room in the hospital on his crutches? The thought of being confined to a hospital bed and being able to hear your attacker’s crutches coming down the hall is terrifying. I wanted to know why the two were only doors apart when they were both in the hospital after trying to kill each other! That seems like a problem!

While the novel was a thrilling read, my favorite part of it was the strong women. Lisbeth herself is a unique heroine and although she is small in stature, she doesn’t let life take control of her, she takes firm control of life. Other female characters such as Monica Figuerola and Erika Berger were tough women in a man’s world. I liked the exerpts about amazons and women warriors. The first book in this trilogy may have been about “men who hate women,” but the third book is about women triumphantly fighting back.

I enjoyed this book and the entire series. If you haven’t read them yet, I highly recommend them. Are the Swedish movies worth watching or should I wait for the American versions?

Book Source: The Kewaunee Public Library


  1. I just finished the first book and we are discussing it tonight in my book club. I haven't decided to continue..hmm...

  2. I loved these books too - not brain food thats for sure, but enjoyable nonetheless. I think the answer to your question about why they were only 2 doors apart is this - dramatic tension.

  3. Lisbeth has become quite a heroine. Even my mother-in-law sited her as a favorite character recently.

    Excellent review, Laura. I will finish this trilogy this year!

  4. I have yet to read the books (although the first one is finally on my nightstand) but I have seen the first two Swedish movies. They are every bit as gritty as I imagine the books to be (no one under 18 can rent them at our video store)but we really thought they were well done. And the actress who plays Lisbeth is outstanding.

  5. I thought the books were great! I've only seen the first movie and thought it was very well done. There were several parts and characters that were simplified, but I still thought that the movie did the book justice. I was nervous about viewing some of the more disturbing scenes, but to my relief they were not quite as graphic as in the novel. I'd definitely recommend it!

  6. I'll have to check the movies out! Thank-you for the recommendations!

  7. Haven't read or seen any of them (yet) but from what I've heard, a lot of people are questioning the Hollywood remake because they think the original films are more than good enough and should be left alone!

  8. This is such a great series, but I admit my favorite book was The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.