Saturday, 11 August 2012

No Pictures and What About Something to Read?

The end of my summer holiday is getting closer and closer. Since so far it has been a great summer. I was in the wild for two weeks to get rid of civilisation and people. I have been to some great trips and journeys. I have been looking after Smallone as her nursery school is closed during the summer holiday and my sister has to go to work.

(And now I would like to share some photos, but I cannot. Mr Blogger has decided to make me mad and I am not able to upload any photograph. So maybe next time if I would be still alive and not in an asylum with my hair ripped off my head and perpetually wispering to myself: "Photographs! I want to share those photographs! Why don´t they let me? Why? Why? I don´t understand why???" So let´s move on.)

I have also read a lot. Finally. I stored some books during the school year to be read during the holiday when I would have time to enjoy them completely. Here are some I recommend:

The Millenium Trilogy by Stieg Larsson

Stieg Larsson (1954-2004) was a Swedish journalist and writer. He was deeply influenced by his grandfather, a convinced anti-fascist (during the WWII. he was imprisoned in a labour camp for his anti-fascist opinions) , and thanks to him Larsson became a strong protector of equal rights for everyone and a fighter for democracy and freedom of speech.
He got his first typewriter when he was twelve. When he was eighteen, Larsson visited a meeting against the Vietnam war and there he met his lifelong partner - Eva Gabrielsson. After completing his military service, Larsson travelled through the Africa. When he came back to Sweden he started to work as a journalist (after trying some other jobs) and he also ran two newspapers.
He became an independent researcher of right-wing extremism in the early 80s and in 1991 he published his first book called Extreme Right. Larsson could be recognized as an expert to right-wing extremism and racist organisations in Sweden. He was giving many lectures and debates about these subjects. Larsson also found the Swedish Expo Foundation. Its goals were to monitor and document the racist and anti-democratic tendencies in Sweden society. Later in 1995 Larsson also became an editor of the foundation´s magazine, called Expo as well. Thanks to these activities, he was living under death threats for most of his life and became an expert for safety precautions. In 2000 he wrote a book about this subject for other journalists.
He and Eva never got married because when they had done it, they would have had to reveal their address under Swedish law. Larsson died of a heart attack at the age of 60 and his Millenium Trilogy was published posthumously.

The Millenium Trilogy constists of three novels originally written in Swedish and translated to English as:
1. The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo (originally called The Men Who Hate Women, 2005)
2. The Girl Who Played with Fire (2006)
3. The Girl Who Kicked the Hornests´ Nest (2007)

The main characters are Lisbeth Salander - an asocial petite hacker with a photographic memory, who works as a private detective, and Mikael Blomkvist - a journalist with the reputation of being almost a detective who can find and reveal the corruption among the influential businessmen and politicians while being incorruptible himself. Blomkvist is a kind of Larsson´s alter-ego. And an influence of Larsson´s own private life can be seen during the whole trilogy.

I am not going to tell you the whole story as it is almost impossible. But you can find the storyline in the official Stieg Larsson page here.
I have perhaps never ever read such a complex and brilliantly written detective story. It could be tortuous, but thanks to Larsson´s skills you cannot be lost.
I do not like long and branched stories which are written in more than two books. And it is so just because I do not know many writers who can write them properly and well. But Larsson is a master.
While reading you suddenly find yourselves at the end of the first book and you realise the story is probably about something a bit different than you think it is. And this makes you curious even more.
I was borrowed the first two books by my mother. After finishing the second book I found out that my mother´s colleague had lent the third part. And it almost drove me mad. I was so curious how it all ends that I had to buy the third part in a bookshop the same day I had finished the second part. And later I bought the first two parts as well. 
As I wrote before - the books are written with an amazing skill. The characters are believable and three-dimensional, with a past, a present and you almost feel they have a future ahead. The story is thrillingly briliant and you would not believe the case in the first book is used only to introduce everyone and everything as it is so good.

If you would like to know more, just visit these:

There are also movies based on the trilogy. And I think it was waste of time. Even the actors were great as well as camera or settings. But the story was not there at all. It is not a fault of the directors. It was just impossible to rewrite the whole story to the script. So the movies are just series of single pictures which are not connected. It is like watching a comic. You have those frames and at the end you can recreate a story in your mind. But as a whole they are not good. And the minute you finish the book, the minute you realise how bad those movies are. It is not their fault. It is not their fault that the books are so great and complex that they cannot be interpreted in only three movies.

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