Thursday, August 27, 2015
Audiobook Review: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson
Title: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest
Author: Stieg Larsson
Narrator: Simon Vance
Unabridged Length: 20 hrs, 21 mn.
Here is a summary of the book from the Goodreads website:
Lisbeth Salander - the heart of Larsson's two previous novels - lies in critical condition, a bullet wound to her head, in the intensive care unit of a Swedish city hospital. She's fighting for her life in more ways than one: if and when she recovers, she'll be taken back to Stockholm to stand trial for three murders. With the help of her friend, journalist Mikael Blomkvist, she will not only have to prove her innocence, but also identify and denounce those in authority who have allowed the vulnerable, like herself, to suffer abuse and violence. And, on her own, she will plot revenge - against the man who tried to kill her, and the corrupt government institutions that very nearly destroyed her life.
Once upon a time, she was a victim. Now Salander is fighting back.
I have to admit that although I listened to this trilogy, I can't say that I am big fan that thoroughly enjoyed all of the books. Simon Vance did a great job of narrating, and although I enjoyed the final installment more than the first two, these books just weren't for me. We find out more about Salander's past, allowing the reader to develop compassion for the young woman.
Salander is a most interesting character as she uses her wits and intelligence to take control of her life that some have taken for granted for too long. We learn about her family life and the events that took place putting her in the category of a highly dysfunctional family. I would say there isn't much of a familial commitment once they try to kill you!
Needless to say, this family experience set the tone for Salander's relationships for the rest of her life. She has come to terms with the fact that she prefers the intimate companionship of women rather than men, but it seems she still longs for Mikael. I think she loves Mikael in her own way and is frustrated because she knows he will never return that love.
Mikael's relationship with Erika seems to carry on as it always has, until he starts to work with a young detective who catches his eye. Finally, Mikael realizes that he wants more than just a sexual relationship with this woman. So as all elements within this final novel seem to find a sense of balance, so does Mikael's love life.
As I said earlier, this is probably my favorite of the series, but I certainly could have gone the rest of my life without experiencing these books. Many people out there have raved about them, but you will not hear that from me. With themes of dysfunctional families, love, mystery, and murder, you may enjoy this book, or the entire series more than I did. I do recommend this book for personal leisure or for book clubs that enjoy a good criminal mystery.
My Rating: 4/5
Disclosure: I borrowed this audiobook from a friend to read for my personal entertainment.