Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Milennium Trilogy

Some of you may remember I discussed this novel (the first one) briefly a few weeks ago. I have since finished reading it and have now discovered that apparently, according to an Entertainment Weekly article, this trilogy is the "hottest book on the planet".

Admittedly I have only read the first of the three but I don't quite understand why. Don't get me wrong, the book is quite good, but it's not the best thing since sliced bread and its commercial success baffles me a little. I do wonder whether becoming a more and more experienced writer has ruined me as a reader. A few short years ago I probably never would have noticed the drawbacks, like the achingly slow beginning and the physical relationship between the two main characters feeling contrived and unnecessary. Now they stand out to me, glaringly so. I can't decide whether or not that's a bad thing.

There is an interesting twist to the real life story behind these novels. The author, Steig Larsson, died before even the first one was published. He left behind only a girlfriend (common law wife) of 30 years, his father and his brother. There is now a legal battle over his estate, which with the success of his novels and the forthcoming Hollywood films (there are already Swedish language versions) is quite large. Sweden has no community property laws that would support the girlfriend's case but she holds a unique trump card, or at least claims to: She says she has an unpublished fourth book saved on a laptop that belonged to Larsson when he was still alive. It will be quite interesting to see what happens with that.

If you like crime thrillers go ahead and pick this novel up (The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo). I haven't read the other two but will probably pick them up even if I was slightly underwhelmed by the first.

Meanwhile some updates:

I've joined twitter. TH Mafi made me do it because she doesn't spacebook. Find me @MatthewMRush.

Speaking of Tahereh her guest blog post will be going up tomorrow morning. It's going to be epic so don't forget to come back for that. In the meantime go read her blog.

The US have made it though to the knockout round in the World Cup, which isn't a huge surprise unless you consider how hard the referees were making it for our side.

What this means is that I'll be at the bar on Saturday afternoon swilling beer with my male friends and getting surly.

Speaking of US soccer our team needs a better nickname. We're known as "The Yanks" which is really lame compared to other teams nicknames like: "Three Lions", "The Azzurri", "Le Bleu", "Bafani, Bafani" and so on.

And just to beat a dead horse regarding the World Cup I saw this in twitter yesterday: This World Cup is working out like WW2 - France have forfeited, the USA turned up late, and England are left to fight the Germans!

Have a great day everyone and don't forget to come back tomorrow!


JE said...

Those books have been everywhere!! Magazine covers, tv, radio, the internet. Everywhere I look I have to see it. I haven't read them...don't plan on it either. I figure just because it's so uber popular, doesn't mean it's good. (


Jessica Bell said...

I know what you mean about feeling like a ruined reader. I feel that too! Sometimes I have to tell myself to sit back and enjoy how the book is written despite the things I've learned.

Every writer is different and chooses different ways to tackle their story. Just because it's different, it doesn't make it wrong, right?

Unknown said...

I've heard great things about these books, my friend has lead me to them and she always knows the interesting one's and they are normally the one's to make it to the top!

I haven't written them on my TBR list yet and it's because I'm not sure I'll want to read them, there are several other books I want to get around to first!

Vicki Rocho said...

I'm waiting for the furor over these books to die down before I start them. IF I even do.

I love Tahereh! She's my bestie, you know? hahaha...will be here bright and early, staking out a place in line.

Christina Lee said...

I did not know that backstory to the books-WOW! I probably will read them at some point! Maybe they get better and better as you move along?

Stephanie Lorée said...

I just did a post yesterday about these books and the author's agenda.

Personally, I love the books, even with all the so-called writer's sins that Larsson commits. I still think they're great, and that's because of the characters.

Alissa Grosso said...

I've yet to read any of these books. My mom recommended the first one to me a couple of years ago, or whenever it was that it came out, but she couldn't really tell me what it was about or why I would want to read it. I guess sooner or later I have to see what all the fuss is about.

Old Kitty said...

All I care about is that Daniel Craig (mega SWOON!!!) is going to be in the film version of one of these books! LOL!

oh BUT seriously!!!! England v Germany is gonna be epic!!! USA are so through to the last 16 - and at least Ghana is there - representing the African continent - so all good!!!

Sorry - I get bitten by the world cup every four years...!!

Take care

Matthew MacNish said...

It's all good Old Kitty - I love the cup myself (obviously). And - actually - according to Entertainment Weekly the casting is still between Daniel Craig and Brad Pitt. I love Brad but I think Daniel would be better for this role.

Karen Jones Gowen said...

I'll go follow you on twitter.

vmichelle said...

Now that I'm spending more time thinking about the craft of storytelling it does change the way I see things - television and movies especially, because often that's so much more condensed.

Jaydee Morgan said...

I struggle with reading as a reader and not a writer. Sometimes, it can make a book less enjoyable that way but if the characters pull me in - I'm hooked!

Sarah Ahiers said...

yeah i've foudn the more i write, the less i can enjoy some books based on their writing. BUT i think i enjoy great books all the more!

Unknown said...

I have the 1st book on my TBR pile. My friends who've read all 3 say that the second two books are amazing and much better than the first. They already warned me about the first 50 pages of the first one, so at least I'm prepared for the slow beginning. :)

Melody said...

Writing has almost ruined me as a reader, too. It's slightly depressing not to be able to enjoy the books I used to. :/

Jordan said...

I'll echo the "ruined as a reader" comments. Though every once in a while, I find a book that I can ignore all the passive constructs and mis- and overused participials and lose myself in the story and the place.

I have Tattoo on my TBR list (reading award winners these days), and my sister is reading it right now. She's not a writer, but she reads a ton—and she actually told me the beginning was really slow, too. So maybe it's not just you. (And maybe storytelling/"good" writing is different in Swedish?)

Mia Hayson said...

Yea, it can ruin reading. But then again, when you find a book you appreciate and love it makes it even more special, no?


Hahaha, quite true about the World cup *nods*

Talli Roland said...

I hear you on the trilogy. I have tried several times to understand why these books are so successful. They just don't do it for me.

Just followed you on Twitter!

Tahereh said...

it's so interesting to read your POV on this book. i've been eyeing it for awhile -- the buzz and hype is so immense it's hard to avoid. but i was never sure if it was my 'kind of thing'.

thanks for the heads up. a lot to ponder.

and YAY tomorrow! hehe :D

Susan Kaye Quinn said...

I love that Yoda is your avatar on Twitter! I'm following Yoda! *grins*

I think you are 1000% right that becoming writers ruins reading, to some extent. I'm afraid we box in books to how they "should" be and when they're not, it's a glaring sore thumb. Amazingly, the readers don't seem to notice - all they connect to is the story. If it grabs them, by whatever magical hocus-pocus occurs, then they're good. Otherwise, meh, and they move on without a second look. But we writers live and breathe it, and are hardly objective in this very, very subjective business.

Looking forward to the guest post!

DEZMOND said...

Serbian national soccer team players are called "eagles" so you might add that one to the list as well :)

Lindsay said...

I have all three of these on my TBR list. I got the first one before all the fuss started about it. I sometimes feel like a ruined reader too. I keep noticing adverbs and telling in books now. lol.
As for the World Cup likeness to WW2. Haha. Love it.

Tracy said...

I haven't been able to force myself to pick them up yet. I don't even know what they're about, but I haven't really been pulled to them. My "To Read" list (not to mention my "To Do" list) is far too long already at this point.

Yay for you joining Twitter! I'ma follow you.

Anonymous said...

I like your blog !!Thank you. They are really great .
do not miss my goods , they are very beautiful !!
Fashion watches
Discount watches
Antique pocket watches

Steve MC said...

I was curious about these books and found a website about him with really interesting articles on his life.

But when I flipped through the book, it just didn't catch me. And I'm always loathe to jump on the latest trend.

And I really hear you on the whole writers-as-readers deal. I couldn't get through a page of Twilight 'cause of the dialogue tags, he pondered ruefully. Maybe that saved me with that book, but many times I'm crossing words out or entire paragraphs.

But then, that shows how we've grown in the craft, and I'm always doing the same to my writing, as well.

Matthew MacNish said...

Anon, I'm not deleting your comment because at least you pretended to love my blog! Nicely done.

lisa and laura said...

This trilogy was chosen as my summer reads for book club. I'm so used to reading YA that I am putting off getting started. They sound pretty good though. Really, really sad about the author dying before publication. All that hard work...

My husband was SO pumped that the U.S. made it to the next round. He's in Vegas and can't wait to put all of our money down on them. Fabulous.

Hannah said...

I have the first two and yes, knowing more about writing does sometimes ruin books for me. That's why I don't read much YA or Romance anymore. There's some good stuff out there though so my TBR list is never small.