Thursday, September 30, 2010

The Firm with the Dragon Tattoo

In honor of exactly one month separating us from Nanowrimo, let's discuss the hugest blockbuster to be published in quite some time: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.

First, kudos to the American publisher that decided to rename this baby. The original title in Sweden was "Men Who Hate Women." Accurate to be sure, but that title is a touch lacking in flair. "Men Who Hate Women" never would have sold 30 million copies, I can tell you that.

Anyhoo, I really had no plans to read this book. Probably because I'm sort of weird that way. Hey, I admit it! When something gets so popular that EVERYONE is reading it, watching it, talking about it...I just don't want anything to do with it. I still haven't seen Avatar! So that's my issue, and I know it's not reasonable, but there you go.

Still, people just wouldn't leave it alone on this one. "You'll love The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo." "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is the best thing I've ever read!" "You have to read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo!"


So I got on the Corvallis Library site ( and put The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on hold.

And got put in line behind 120 other people waiting for it. Crap. And they've got like 20 copies of the damn thing!

Anyway, last week it finally came.

And yesterday, I finished it.

And here's my official review (spoiler alert):

I've read this before.

Nineteen years ago.

It was called "The Firm."

And I've met Lisbeth Salander before. Back in 1991, her name was Mitch McDeere.

OK, there are some differences. But now that you're thinking about it, the two books actually have a lot of similarities, don't they? Go ahead, admit it, you're among friends here.

Anyway, it's good. I'm not saying it's not good. But it's not great. It's not 30 million great. It's not even "The Firm" great.

I'm gonna say B. No way more than a B+.

And now let's bring it all the way around. In one month, you've got a chance to write 50,000 words. If you can come up with 50,000 that grade out at a B+ or an A-, maybe you could sell 30 million copies as well.

Only one way to find out.

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