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Lisbeth Salander—the heart of Larsson’s two previous novels—is under close supervision in the intensive care unit of a Swedish city hospital. She’s fighting for her life in more ways than one: when she’s well enough, she’ll stand trial for three murders. With the help of her friend, journalist Mikael Blomkvist, she will have to prove her innocence, and to identify the corrupt politicians who have allowed the vulnerable, like herself, to suffer abuse. And, on her own, she will plot her revenge—against the man who tried to kill her and the government institutions that very nearly destroyed her life.
Once upon a time, she was a victim. Now Lisbeth Salander is ready to fight back.
“A thoroughly gripping read that shows off the maturation of the author’s storytelling talents. . . . Lisbeth Salander, Stieg Larsson’s fierce pixie of a heroine, is one of the most original characters in a thriller to come along in a while—a gamin, Audrey Hepburn look-alike but with tattoos and piercings, the take-no-prisoners attitude of Lara Croft and the cool, unsentimental intellect of Mr. Spock. . . . In Hornet’s Nest, Larsson effortlessly constructs an immensely complicated story line that owes less to the Silence of the Lambs horror genre than to something by John le Carré. . . . Cutting nimbly from one story line to another, Larsson does an expert job of pumping up suspense while credibly evoking the disparate worlds his characters inhabit. . . . The novel ends in a gory, made-for-the-movies confrontation between Salander and a malignant villain out of a James Bond novel. But the real showdown in this harrowing novel is between Salander and a ruthless government cabal: an equally familiar trope from movie and book thrillers, but one that Larsson manages to reinvent here with dexterity, ardor and a stoked imagination.” —Michiko Kakutani, New York Times
“If you enjoy contemporary thrillers with major, larger-than-life main characters, sharp social commentary, and forward moving plots please do pick up those first two volumes and play catch-up. . . . Anyone who enjoys grounding their imaginations in hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of exciting pages about the way we live now ought to take advantage of this trilogy . . . [The new book has a] splendidly constructed plot . . . I lingered over pages, languished in them, not wanting the story to end even as the book moved inexorably toward one of contemporary fiction’s most triumphant trial scenes.” —Alan Cheuse, Chicago Tribune
“Salander burns through the Nordic languor with her electric rage, her incandescent cleverness, her principled refusal of all emotional ties and her determination to think the worst of everybody. Much of the pleasure of reading Larsson lies in getting righteously angry on Salander’s behalf.” —Lev Grossman, Time
“The Millennium Trilogy is not only a runaway commercial success but perhaps the best, most broadly focused examination of modern politics in popular fiction. . . . Larsson left a monument behind, a modern masterpiece. . . . The novel fully lives up to the excellence of the previous two. . . . The trilogy ranks among those novels that expand the horizons of popular fiction. . . . It’s a rich, exciting, suspenseful story.” —Patrick Anderson, Washington Post
“A mesmerizing series [with] surprising plots that roar with life and imagination. . . . Hornet’s Nest wastes no time charging headlong into the electrifying story Larsson began in Dragon Tattoo. . . . Salander is surely one of the best and most riveting characters ever committed to the page. . . . The book’s perfect final pages are guaranteed to make your heart ache more than a little. . . . Larsson’s deft characterizations of Blomkvist and Salander are so compelling that the realization that this book marks the end of their literary travels is crushing. . . . But this miraculous series is worth any sorrow we may feel at its end.” —Connie Ogle, Miami Herald
“Larsson is remarkably agile at keeping multiple balls in the air. But it wouldn’t really matter if he weren’t a skilled craftsman because Salander is such a bravura heroine—steel will and piercing intelligence veiling a heartbreaking vulnerability—that we’d willingly follow through any bramble bush of a plot. . . . She dominates the stage like Lear. There are few characters as formidable as Lisbeth Salander in contemporary fiction of any kind. She will be sorely missed.” —Bill Ott, Booklist (starred)
“Patented Larsson, meaning fast-paced enough to make those Jason Bourne films seem like Regency dramas.” —Kirkus Reviews (starred)
“The completion of the trilogy confirms Larsson as one of the great talents of contemporary crime fiction. “—Joan Smith, Sunday Times
“Larsson’s vivid characters, the depth of the detail across the three books, the powerfully imaginative plot, and the sheer verve of the writing make the trilogy a masterpiece of its genre . . . Salander remains Larsson’s most enduring and compelling creation . . . She seems to walk off the pages into the room . . . Larsson’s knowledge of the inner workings of the Swedish police, intelligence service, and private security companies bring an extra layer of texture and verisimilitude . . . The trilogy’s success shows that complex characters, a fast-paced narrative, and a dazzling mosaic of challenging plots and sub-plots can keep readers hooked.”—The
“The final verdict is in: Stieg Larsson has posthumously proven himself to be one of the Greats of Mystery Fiction, taking his place in the pantheon along with other demi-Gods like Christie, Sayers, Hammett, Chandler, Robert Parker and his (still-breathing) fellow Swede, Henning Mankell. With the frantically awaited American publication of The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest, the soaring architectural ambition of Larsson’s trilogy fully reveals itself . . . Superb.” —Maureen Corrigan, (NPR.org)
“Like Stephen King, David Baldacci and Michael Connelly, Larsson knows how to keep us awake late into the night, turning pages breathlessly.” —Doug Childers, Richmond Times-Dispatch
“Not many characters are as uniquely compelling as Lisbeth Salander. . . . Hornet’s Nest takes off pedal to the metal. . . . The ending is a new emotional frontier.” —Colette Bancroft, St. Petersburg Times
“Larsson breathlessly takes up his tale the day after book number two left off. . . . His characters have nuance and depth.” —Kathe Connair, Minneapolis Star Tribune
“A stinging conclusion. . . . The millions of fans of Stieg Larsson’s best-selling Millennium Trilogy will get all of what they love about the series.” —Frank Quaratiello, Boston Herald
“As in the first two books, the pace is galloping. . . . Salander is wonderfully drawn.” —Gregory Black, San Jose Mercury News
“Larsson’s work is original, inventive, shocking, disturbing, and challenging . . . The chapters taking place in the courtroom are among the most brilliant of the whole trilogy . . . [The novels] are immensely readable . . . They’ve brought a much needed freshness into the world of crime fiction.”—Marcel Berlins, Times
“Fans will not be disappointed: this is another roller-coaster ride that keeps you reading far too late into the night. Intricate but flawlessly plotted, it has complex characters as well as a satisfying, clear moral thrust.” —Andrew Neather, Evening Standard
“Salander is a magnificent creation: a feminist avenging angel . . . I cannot think of another modern writer who so successfully turns his politics away from a preachy manifesto and into a dynamic narrative device. Larsson’s hatred of injustice will drive readers across the world through a three-volume novel and leave them regretting the final page; and regretting, even more, the early death of a mastery storyteller just as he was entering his prime.” —Nick Cohen, Observer
“Larsson has produced a coup de foudre, a novel that is complex, satisfying, clever, moral . . . This is a grown-up novel for grown-up readers, who want something more than a quick fix and a car chase. And it’s why the Millennium trilogy is rightly a publishing phenomenon all over the world.” —Kate Mosse, Guardian
“[The trilogy] is intricately plotted, lavishly detailed but written with a breakneck pace and verve . . [Hornet’s Nest] is a tantalizing double finale–first idyllic, then frenetic . . . Larsson has made the literary moods of saga and soap opera converge–with suspense as the adhesive. And, behind the quickfire action, those great chords of moral and political witness continue to resonate.” —Boyd Tonkin Independent
“[These are] extraordinary novels [with] astonishing impact . . . breakneck plotting, sympathetic characterization and the kind of startling denouements that occur more frequently than is conventionally considered possible. There is a comparison with that other great work of contemporary entertainment, The Wire, in the rage and clarity with which injustice becomes the driver of a novel way of looking at a society. Be warned: the trilogy, like The Wire, is seriously addictive.” —Guardian (editorial)