Just a couple of days ago, Chris scored a copy of The Girl Who Played with Fire from our inter-library loan.  He had only typed the request into the computer a couple of days before that.  Almost as fast as waiting in line to buy the book at Border’s, and way cheaper.

Which turns out to be a good thing.

Here’s our conversation from last night:

ME:   Why is your book downstairs instead of by your side of the bed?  Are you so engrossed that you’re carrying it around the house and reading it in spare moments?

HIM:  No, I’m sending it back to the library.  It’s crap.  I can’t read this!

ME:  What?!  But you liked The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, right?

HIM:  Yes, but the formula is getting stale.  The guy can’t write.  Where was the editor?  And the characters!  The journalist Blomquist isn’t that interesting.  Plus, the girl with the dragon tattoo who played with fire and kicked the hornet’s nest is dirty and disturbing. 

ME:  What about the plot, didn’t THAT suck you in?

HIM:  (spoiler alert)  The plot is preposterous!  It opens in a tropical island where Salander saves her island lover when his beach shack is about to be flattened, then, despite weighing about 80 pounds, she is not carried away while running through the tornado/cyclone/hurricane.  And she knows the weird tourist is going to kill his wife, which is told in the clunkiest way possible.

ME:  So instead of sucking you in, you’re saying the plot just sucked.

HIM:  Exactly.

And so this morning the book will return  to the library.  Funny thing, the other night our book club met to discuss The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo and they weren’t feeling the love either.  Some couldn’t finish it, others hated the violence, I defended it but admitted the constant plot twists involving endless viewings of newspaper archives, photos, and business receipts was indeed beyond tedious. 

Final Spoiler Alert:

Mostly what struck me, having just seen the movie version, was how unruffled and unrattled Harald Vanger was at the end.  Give me a break. You just learned that your brother and nephew were running a kidnap/rape/torture/murder machine for decades – just a few steps from your own house.  Eh….Harald seemed largely unfazed.

I know the Swedes are not, as a rule, emotional people – but come ON!  Do we need The Girl who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest to kick a little ass to get an appropriate reaction here?

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