The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest by Stieg LarssonThe Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest by Stieg Larsson

The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest

byStieg Larsson

Paperback | September 24, 2015

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Lisbeth Salander—the heart of Larsson’s two previous novels—lies in critical condition, a bullet wound to her head, in the intensive care unit of a Swedish city hospital. She’s fighting for her life in more ways than one: if and when she recovers, she’ll be taken back to Stockholm to stand trial for three murders. With the help of her friend, journalist Mikael Blomkvist, she will not only have to prove her innocence, but also identify and denounce those in authority who have allowed the vulnerable, like herself, to suffer abuse and violence. And, on her own, she will plot revenge—against the man who tried to kill her, and the corrupt government institutions that very nearly destroyed her life.

Once upon a time, she was a victim. Now Salander is fighting back.
Stieg Larsson, who lived in Sweden, was the editor in chief of the magazine Expo and a leading expert on antidemocratic, right-wing extremist and Nazi organizations. He died in 2004, shortly after delivering the manuscripts for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest.
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Title:The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's NestFormat:PaperbackDimensions:576 pages, 8.25 × 5.26 × 1.43 inPublished:September 24, 2015Publisher:Penguin CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0143198386

ISBN - 13:9780143198383

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Reviews

Rated 4 out of 5 by from Great Read! This book, although a bit slow at times, is a great final installment of the Millenium Trilogy.
Date published: 2017-10-01
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Read You just can't put it down. Such a pageturner
Date published: 2017-09-17
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good This series is a dark fantasy that is not for everyone. Even though I really liked this series some parts were really disturbing. Lisbeth is the strongest female character I have read, she has her own way of fighting back.
Date published: 2017-08-13
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Slogging Read I am shocked by the positive reception that this final installment of the mega-popular "Millenium Trilogy" has received. If you're expecting fast-paced action akin to the plot-driven first and second installments, expect over 600 pages of static, non-linear plot progression. Instead you will have to wait for Lisbeth to recover from her severe injuries in a hospital bed. Meanwhile, you will have to endure the introduction of 30 or more secondary characters. However, if you're a patient reader and crave closure, I can promise you that the final 250 pages are characterized by a riveting court case that is oh-so-sweet for long time readers.
Date published: 2017-07-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A good read A great follow-up to Dragon Tattoo (but with a couple slow spots).
Date published: 2017-07-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Fitting Conclusion! The length of the book and the slow middle pace may be a drawback until we reach Saladner's recovery and trial. Still, an awesome book featuring one of the best set of fictional characters in journalist Mikael Blomkvist and Elizabeth Salander. Who knew so much drama existed in Sweden?
Date published: 2017-06-27
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest An excellent sequel. Lisbeth continues to impress me.
Date published: 2017-06-26
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Slow but still good This was a great ending to the trilogy which kept the surprises and twists coming. It was still a little slow to slog through but wanting to know what would happened kept me going and I wasn't disappointed. I know it left a small thread hanging but I don't feel compelled to read the sequels and I'm quite happy leaving this story behind as the writing is really slow and I don't feel the need to put myself through that anymore.
Date published: 2017-06-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest Such an amazing ending to the series!
Date published: 2017-06-06
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Third Book There is something so intriguing about Lisbeth. This book consumes you in a good way.
Date published: 2017-06-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Another Masterpeice It's not as good as The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo BUT it is still absolutely brilliant. If you loved the first two books, you'll love this one too.
Date published: 2017-05-21
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Amazing Series This book was a little slow but definately worth the read!
Date published: 2017-04-29
Rated 5 out of 5 by from i love this trilogy! after a couple of chapters i was hooked!
Date published: 2017-04-27
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Wonderful A perfect conclusion to the trilogy.
Date published: 2017-04-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Another thrilling story As with the first two books in this series, I had a hard time putting this book down. Lisbeth is a fascinating heroine (or anti-heroine as the case may be).
Date published: 2017-03-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets Nest A dark mystery. Not what I usually read but enjoyed it nonetheless.
Date published: 2017-03-18
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Lisbeth's Revenge is Sweet One really has to pay attention to the plot from the previous two books to understand what is happening in the third book in this trilogy! Lisbeth had a lot of pent up anger inside and her way of seeking revenge was unique! As Lisbeth had helped Mikael Bomkvist, he now took it upon himself to prove her innocence with the help of some of her computer hacking friends! What an interesting turn of events surfaced at the trial! I loved it! Perhaps not as riveting as the first two books but still an entertaining read!
Date published: 2017-03-15
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Such a good read! The way the story unfolds will leave you speechless! I really enjoyed it.
Date published: 2017-03-11
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good I couldn't wait to find out the end
Date published: 2017-03-10
Rated 4 out of 5 by from awesome! Great continuation of our favourite Lisbeth Salander!
Date published: 2017-02-05
Rated 2 out of 5 by from The beginning is slow It is really hard to get through the first half of the book, especially because the book is so long. You keep wondering if something is going to happen, and if it's worth reading all the way through
Date published: 2017-01-22
Rated 5 out of 5 by from loved Recommend reading, it's quite good.#plumreview
Date published: 2017-01-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Great End to A Great Series Everything I expected it to be, just as intense and satisfying as the first two books
Date published: 2016-12-12
Rated 3 out of 5 by from fitting end Really enjoyed this series.
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good series Recommend reading, it's quite good.
Date published: 2016-12-08
Rated 4 out of 5 by from The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest I had a little bit of a hard time getting into this book. It started off pretty slow, but it did start to pick up about half way through the book. I was expecting a little more, but it was still a decent read.
Date published: 2016-11-24
Rated 5 out of 5 by from great finale to the trilogy Great wrap up and finish to the trilogy! Loved the writing style and adventure that this book series brought!
Date published: 2016-11-21
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great Book Excellent part of the trilogy
Date published: 2016-11-15
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Worst of the trilogy, but still a decent book I did not like this book as much as I liked the previous two books from the series. Book 1, Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, was a wonderfully intriguing mystery, while book 2, Girl Who Played With Fire, dealt with Salander's shady past and Blomkvist's investigation into the sex trade. The two again get their stories crossed when the reporters investigating the prostitution ring stumble across a mysterious crime kingpin who happens to be Salander's estranged father. Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest deals with the fallout of the first two books, but it gets dragged down in introducing far too many new characters and a storyline involving Millennium's editor, Erika Berger, that sticks out like a sore thumb for being completely useless to the resolution of the problem facing Salander. Things do come together nicely in the end for Lisbeth Salander, but at the expense of a third novel that is too long and simply not as engrossing as the other two.
Date published: 2012-10-14
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Perfect Knot on a Tightly Written Trilogy! Well, I have to say that after reading the third novel in the Millennium Trilogy, my hunger has been duly satiated and then some! Now that I'm done, it makes me wish that there was more of Lisbeth's adventures to read about, but sadly all I can do to relive this sensation is read the books over and again until the pages are falling loose of their spine. Slightly more lackluster than Played with Fire, Hornets' Nest still delivers an excellent story with the right amount of punch that we've come to expect of Stieg Larsson. The courtroom scenes are nail-biting, and you finally feel a sense of accomplishment for Lisbeth as she is finally able to get...well I won't spoil it for you, but you get the picture! I have now read all three novels, and I pray that Stieg Larsson's estate will let loose the rights of the subsequent novels to Ms. Gabrielsson (who in my mind will always be Mrs. Stieg Larsson), because she, and only she, can do this series justice. And although the translation is rough in some parts, I would love Reg Keeland to translate the text, purely for consistency's sake. All in all, this is an incredible trilogy, and I recommend them wholeheartedly to anyone who likes crime drama, and really anyone who is interested in great literature! I, and many other fans like me, truly hope that more of Lisbeth's days will be quickly at hand. Until then, skål!
Date published: 2012-08-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist are intoxicating I loved the entire trilogy but this last chapter in the Millenium series was absolutely amazing. Be sure to read all three books as it only gets better as you go on. I wish there was a 4th book, which of course would have been finished if not for Stieg Larsson's untimely death. I've read that there were plans for up to 10 books in the series with each one revealing more about Lisbeth's troubled life and reason for each of her tattoos.
Date published: 2012-06-01
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Satisfying End This book was a very satisfying conclusion to the trilogy. It had none of the gruesome content of the first book, which I was grateful for, and was fast paced and kept me reading late into the night. Definitely worth the read.
Date published: 2012-01-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Girl Who kicked the Hornet's Nest This was my favorite book out of the trilogy. It wrapped the story up nicely and was entertaining the whole way through. You know a book is good when you wake up at 4am just to see how it ends...
Date published: 2011-09-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A satisfying conclusion I was a huge fan of the first two books in this series. This ending didn't disappoint. I found there were alot of characters and story-lines to keep track of, and sometimes that bogged the reader down. But as to the story itself, I felt like the author brought us full circle. I appreciated what I will term "closure" (without giving anything away) between the respective characters. There was never a dull moment. The book kept me gripped to the end, and I highly recommend this series! Can't wait for the movies!
Date published: 2011-09-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Captivating Book 3, in the Millennium trilogy This series has captivated me from the start, not only that each instalment is a superior pager-turner that manages to draw you into the world of interesting characters it also delivers a story that is riveting and wholly engrossing. “The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest” is complex, satisfying and clever. The final instalment picks up where the second left off. Lisbeth is in hospital under arrest and fighting for her life in intensive care, while her father, two rooms from her, is being treated for his axe wound to the face. From the start, the story is so crammed with characters, plots and sub-plots it will take a book itself to summarize the main points only. The author loves to takes us on many side trips such as exposing the dirty secrets of the Swedish Secret Service while Lisbeth recuperates from her injuries and contemplates her revenge while waiting for her day in court. The plotting can be convoluted and challenging at times and the wild ride continues with Blomqvist exposing Zalachenco and his contacts with the Swedish government. True to the author’s style, he has our heads spinning one curve after another, an endless supply of highs and lows. The many minor characters can give the reader a case of information overload, however, the storyline neatly wraps up the fate of each major player including the fascinating heroine, Lisbeth Salander. Regrettably this seems to be the end of the series. I will miss Mr. Larsson’s contributions to the world of suspense novels.
Date published: 2011-09-10
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thrilling and exciting This excellent conclusion to Stieg Larsson's amazing trilogy, does the very opposite of disappoint. The thrilling ending showcases Lisbeth's Salander's fight for justice, alongside journalist Mikael Blomkvist. Incorporates the girl who did all three things that we all love her for. Her enemies might think that they've got her covered, but they've underestimated her one time too many.
Date published: 2011-06-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from savor it horrified Stieg Larsson has passed away and there will be no more books by him. Had to ration my reading so it didn't gobble it in one reading - take your time - it is worth it!!!!
Date published: 2011-04-13
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Long and drawn out Yes I loved this book. It was an amazing series. I'm not usually one for crime novels but this one takes the cake. I can't say too much because I'm not in any way an expert but this book took forever the get through, it starts out so very slowly it's suffocating. I felt like I was skimming to get to the end. But nonetheless; a very flamboyant and exhilarating finish. Also; WHY CAN'T I FIND THIS IN PAPERBACK?!?! It's been out for almost 6 months and it's STILL only available in either hardcover or eReader. I'd really like to own the last one of the trilogy without having to pay for a hardcover price. (I've bought books used before, and they are in awful condition. Obviously few people appreciate and respect books enough to want to give their second owners some of the initial value of the book, and instead find it pleasing to mutilate and massacre their books before reselling)
Date published: 2011-04-07
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A perfect ending This book was the best way for him to end the Salander saga! I couldn't put the book down, I had to know how it ended! I am truly going to miss the characters; they came to life for me!
Date published: 2011-01-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Ready for it to be over When I started Hornets Nest, I was worried about what I would do after I completed it...as in fact, it was the end of the series. I really enjoyed the characters and the story. By about halfway through, I began to lost interest. It was still a great story and I thoroughly loved all 3 novels, and I absolutely recommend it. The best part in a way, was that it didn't leave me wanting more.
Date published: 2010-12-29
Rated 3 out of 5 by from A lot slower, but still a good read I know by the time you get to this book you will aching for more Salander. Unfortunately like all the other reviews have stated she is not in the book very much. I thought it parts were pretty slow. I mean they drag a lot in to Swedish politics and the "agency". Maybe the author didn't think it was going to be an international bestseller??. It is interesting to learn about other countries. Does not move as fast as the first or second.
Date published: 2010-12-20
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Slow Beginning I found the beginning of this book to be very slow. It did get better 1/2 way through and ended up having a really good ending. I recommend that anyone who reads the Stieg Larsson series starts reading the Girl With the Dragon Tatoo first and then The Girl Who Played with Fire. Don't read this book first or you will be totally confused. This is a great series!!!
Date published: 2010-09-29
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Ending to the series I am surprised that I was able to finish all three of the books. The size of all three books is very discouraging but it's intense. In this book, there are a few surprises that are unexpected but if you ponder on the plot a bit, it becomes predictable. Even at the very ending, there is one subplot still left to be completed. It's expected. It's a bit slower than the first two. You kind of know what to expect and when you do, the story just drags. Otherwise, the book is worth reading because it's the ending and if you managed to read the first two, you just have to read the last one.
Date published: 2010-09-22
Rated 4 out of 5 by from excellent thriller Salander lies in critical condition fighting for her life in allot of ways but she does plot her revenge to destroy the people that tried to destroy her. We learn allot more about corruption in the government institutions and political conspiracy all revolving aroung Lisbeth Salander. Larsson's characters are so believable and real. Excellent thrilling trilogy.
Date published: 2010-09-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a finish! This 3rd book in the Millenium Trilogy was such an orgasmic reading experience that I read it twice ... just to enjoy the finale all over again. I read it in French first and bought the books in English so my English friends could enjoy this incredible well written story. Also, this is the kind of book you want to pass around and it will inhabit you for quite some time. If you are a member of a book club this is a must, but you should read "The girl with the dragon tattoo" first and continue with "The girl who played with fire" before getting to this one. I garantee that opinions and ideas will fly as passions will arise. There is a documentary on Larsson's life that you can watch on YouTube (if you search for "Horreur boréale, Larsson") that will help you have a better understanding of the political aspects depicted in the book. It is only in French but I am sure it will be translated soon because of the success of both books and movies. It is a little over an hour long and please watch it only after you've read the Millenium Trilogy. You will see the parallels between Larsson and Super Blomkvist lives.
Date published: 2010-08-03
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A fascinating read In order to appreciate this book, you really need to have read the preceding two. A complicated, convoluted 'tying up' of the trilogy which takes the reader in several different directions which don't evolve predictably.. Full of surprises - the well-drawn characters don't do what you think/wish/ they would but the outcome is satisfying.
Date published: 2010-07-23
Rated 1 out of 5 by from QUESTION?? Is this book any good. I've read like the first two chapters. It's really slow. Does it get any better??
Date published: 2010-07-23
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Just ok This was the slowest of the 3 books for me. I was about to give up half way through it because I just couldn't take anymore background information. Lizbeth Salander was not very active in this book, therefore the story lacked her strange, but captivating character.
Date published: 2010-07-20
Rated 5 out of 5 by from What a way to end the series This is the third installment in the Millenium series by the late Swedish author Stieg Larsson and it doesn't disappoint. The story shifts now primarily to Lisabeth Salander's past and the indignities perpetrated on her by the Swedish government and the secret police. The story's focus is on her fight to gain her freedom assisted by her former lover Michael Blomkwist. It's fast paced, easy to read and the writing and the story line are excellent. Hate to see the series that brought us the Lisabeth Salander character come to an end - maybe there is a 4th book floating around there somewhere? Borrow or buy all three.
Date published: 2010-07-19
Rated 4 out of 5 by from A Classic The third book of the triology certainly ties things up pretty well. Numerous plots and sub plots will keep you reading well into the night. Although there are twists that have nothing to do with the main story line, they are acceptable and adds to the overall flavour. I thought that the arrests of the "Section" was done far to quickly in that we were following them from the beginning. However, a real classic, highly recommended.
Date published: 2010-07-19
Rated 5 out of 5 by from A Satisfying End It's a real shame that Larsson won't be writing any more books because this trilogy is absolutely astounding. While the translation is often written in fragment sentences (could have been written that way in Swedish, I suppose) the narrative flows nicely. The plot is intricate and the characters believable. I find the fact that all the place names are in Swediish a bit confusing since I have no idea how to pronounce them in my head, but it doesn't take away from the story at all. A great ending to a great series.
Date published: 2010-07-18
Rated 1 out of 5 by from I don't know..... Can't put my finger on it, but I had a hard time getting through this book. The characters (names) were hard to follow. The chapters were at times repetitive. The characters kept repeating themselves!! In the first few pages it was like reading a poorly written children's book. The writing is not that strong! I don't know what to make of this book. I know many people like this book a lot; therefore, might not like my comments much, but honestly I thought the book was a waste of time.
Date published: 2010-07-06
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good Ending! I've read all three books and they were all fantastic. The only thing that I could say about the third book was that there were a few areas that could have been cut out. For example he really liked going into a lot of detail about some of the minor charaters backgrounds. Some of them were necessary (ie Evert Gullberg) however some of them weren't as necessary to know their history. However still an all around good read!
Date published: 2010-07-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Awesome Read!! I loved this book! It pretty much picks up where the other one left off, and sums up the whole Lisbeth Salander saga nicely. I did question the introduction of new characters and their background stories, however; as with all of Larsson's supporting characters I soon became invested in their stories and couldn't put the book down! "The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest" is definitely my favorite of Larsson's trilogy of books, which is not to take anything away from the other two books cause I loved them all - they're great!!!
Date published: 2010-07-02
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I am "The Girl who Loved the Millennium Trilogy" Third book of the Millennium Trilogy. The expected cast of characters of this trilogy returns with a few new additions whom show their once brilliance again to expose the corrupted. I thoroughly enjoyed and loved all 3 books equally. If you have not read the first two than it is must to read in order and will be well worth it.
Date published: 2010-06-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Exciting Book! This was a great read! 11.120
Date published: 2010-06-24
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Disappointing This book does not measure up to its two predecessors. It still has the fascinating character Salander and a little of Blomkvist, but it is heavily padded and lacks a coherent storyline; e.g. Larsson tells us far more than we need, or want, to know about some secondary characters such as Berger and Gullberg.
Date published: 2010-06-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Absolutely Great! This was a great book!
Date published: 2010-06-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from WOW JUST AWESOME!
Date published: 2010-06-11
Rated 5 out of 5 by from I know it will be great I will write a review once i've read it but i've read the first book and I'm almost done the second book in the millennium trilogy and I can't wait to start reading the third book. The series is fantastic thus far and wanted to let anyone out there know that this will be a great read for the summer, maybe one of the best reads of your summer.
Date published: 2010-06-09
Rated 2 out of 5 by from Disappointing Not as good as the second and nowhere near as good as the first in the trilogy. Could have used significant careful editing to move the story along. Unnecessarily too long. Some preachy sections; some plodding sections. My husband is having the same difficulty getting through the book. Story didn't pick up until well past the mid-point of the book for me.
Date published: 2010-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from The Girl WHo Kicked the Hornet's NEst This last of the trilogy keeps the fast-paced suspenseful story that the first two books had. There's lots of interesting twists and turns and the reader is alternately anticipating the worst, then breathing a sigh of relief! Excellent!
Date published: 2010-06-07
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Best of the Trilogy The first two books were great, but the third is amazing. Non-stop action, intricate plot... What a shame Mr. Larsson could not get to see his success and great loss for all of those who loved his books.
Date published: 2010-06-05
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Amazing I loved this book. It was the perfect conclusion to the series. Lisbeth Salander is an amazing character. This book pulled me in right from the start and was almost impossible to put down. While I was at work, I would think about what was happening in the book. The entire book shows the thought process of those plotting against Lisbeth and those trying to help her. There is a lot about the Swedish government that can be dry, but it does all tie together in the end.
Date published: 2010-05-28
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Thrilling This book has all the suspense of the others and a great ending, I couldn't put it down. It's sad to think this is the last story about Lisbeth, but the ending was great considering it wasn't intended to be the last book.
Date published: 2010-05-17
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Sad that this is his last book. The trilogy is nicely wrapped up in this 3rd and final book of the Millenium Trilogy. I really enjoyed this book and felt a real sadness that the author would write no more.
Date published: 2010-04-25

Read from the Book

chapter 1Friday, April 8Dr. Jonasson was woken by a nurse five minutes before the helicopter was expected to land. It was just before 1:30 in the morning."What?" he said, confused."Rescue Service helicopter coming in. Two patients. An injured man and a younger woman. The woman has gunshot wounds.""All right," Jonasson said wearily.Although he had slept for only half an hour, he felt groggy. He was on the night shift in the ER at Sahlgrenska hospital in Göteborg. It had been a strenuous evening.By 12:30 the steady flow of emergency cases had eased off. He had made a round to check on the state of his patients and then gone back to the staff bedroom to try to rest for a while. He was on duty until 6:00, and seldom got the chance to sleep even if no emergency patients came in. But this time he had fallen asleep almost as soon as he turned out the light.Jonasson saw lightning out over the sea. He knew that the helicopter was coming in the nick of time. All of a sudden a heavy downpour lashed at the window. The storm had moved in over Göteborg.He heard the sound of the chopper and watched as it banked through the storm squalls down towards the helipad. For a second he held his breath when the pilot seemed to have difficulty controlling the aircraft. Then it vanished from his field of vision and he heard the engine slowing to land. He took a hasty swallow of his tea and set down the cup.Jonasson met the emergency team in the admissions area. The other doctor on duty took on the first patient who was wheeled in-an elderly man with his head bandaged, apparently with a serious wound to the face. Jonasson was left with the second patient, the woman who had been shot. He did a quick visual examination: it looked like she was a teenager, very dirty and bloody, and severely wounded. He lifted the blanket that the Rescue Service had wrapped around her body and saw that the wounds to her hip and shoulder were bandaged with duct tape, which he considered a pretty clever idea. The tape kept bacteria out and blood in. One bullet had entered her hip and gone straight through the muscle tissue. He gently raised her shoulder and located the entry wound in her back. There was no exit wound: the round was still inside her shoulder. He hoped it had not penetrated her lung, and since he did not see any blood in the woman's mouth he concluded that probably it had not."Radiology," he told the nurse in attendance. That was all he needed to say.Then he cut away the bandage that the emergency team had wrapped around her skull. He froze when he saw another entry wound. The woman had been shot in the head, and there was no exit wound there either.Jonasson paused for a second, looking down at the girl. He felt dejected. He often described his job as being like that of a goalkeeper. Every day people came to his place of work in varying conditions but with one objective: to get help.Jonasson was the goalkeeper who stood between the patient and Fonus Funeral Service. His job was to decide what to do. If he made the wrong decision, the patient might die or perhaps wake up disabled for life. Most often he made the right decision, because the vast majority of injured people had an obvious and specific problem. A stab wound to the lung or a crushing injury after a car crash were both particular and recognizable problems that could be dealt with. The survival of the patient depended on the extent of the damage and on Jonasson's skill.There were two kinds of injury that he hated. One was a serious burn case, because no matter what measures he took the burns would almost inevitably result in a lifetime of suffering. The second was an injury to the brain.The girl on the gurney could live with a piece of lead in her hip and a piece of lead in her shoulder. But a piece of lead inside her brain was a trauma of a wholly different magnitude. He was suddenly aware of the nurse saying something."Sorry. I wasn't listening.""It's her.""What do you mean?""It's Lisbeth Salander. The girl they've been hunting for the past few weeks, for the triple murder in Stockholm."Jonasson looked again at the unconscious patient's face. He realized at once that the nurse was right. He and the whole of Sweden had seen Salander's passport photograph on billboards outside every newspaper kiosk for weeks. And now the murderer herself had been shot, which was surely poetic justice of a sort.But that was not his concern. His job was to save his patient's life, irrespective of whether she was a triple murderer or a Nobel Prize winner. Or both.Then the efficient chaos, the same in every ER the world over, erupted. The staff on Jonasson's shift set about their appointed tasks. Salander's clothes were cut away. A nurse reported on her blood pressure-100/70-while the doctor put his stethoscope to her chest and listened to her heartbeat. It was surprisingly regular, but her breathing was not quite normal.Jonasson did not hesitate to classify Salander's condition as critical. The wounds in her shoulder and hip could wait until later, with a compress on each, or even with the duct tape that some inspired soul had applied. What mattered was her head. Jonasson ordered tomography with the new and improved CT scanner that the hospital had lately acquired.Jonasson had a view of medicine that was at times unorthodox. He thought doctors often drew conclusions that they could not substantiate. This meant that they gave up far too easily; alternatively, they spent too much time at the acute stage trying to work out exactly what was wrong with the patient so as to decide on the right treatment. This was correct procedure, of course. The problem was that the patient was in danger of dying while the doctor was still doing his thinking.But Jonasson had never before had a patient with a bullet in her skull. Most likely he would need a brain surgeon. He had all the theoretical knowledge required to make an incursion into the brain, but he did not by any means consider himself a brain surgeon. He felt inadequate, but all of a sudden he realized that he might be luckier than he deserved. Before he scrubbed up and put on his operating clothes he sent for the nurse."There's an American professor from Boston working at the Karolinska hospital in Stockholm. He happens to be in Göteborg tonight, staying at the Elite Park Avenue on Avenyn. He just gave a lecture on brain research. He's a good friend of mine. Could you get the number?"While Jonasson was still waiting for the X-rays, the nurse came back with the number of the Elite Park Avenue. Jonasson picked up the phone. The night porter at the Elite Park Avenue was very reluctant to wake a guest at that time of night and Jonasson had to come up with a few choice phrases about the critical nature of the situation before his call was put through."Good morning, Frank," Jonasson said when the call was finally answered. "It's Anders. Do you feel like coming over to Sahlgrenska to help out in a brain op?""Are you bullshitting me?" Dr. Frank Ellis had lived in Sweden for many years and was fluent in Swedish-albeit with an American accent- but when Jonasson spoke to him in Swedish, Ellis always replied in his mother tongue."The patient is in her mid-twenties. Entry wound, no exit.""And she's alive?""Weak but regular pulse, less regular breathing, blood pressure one hundred over seventy. She also has a bullet wound in her shoulder and another in her hip. But I know how to handle those two.""Sounds promising," Ellis said."Promising?""If somebody has a bullet in their head and they're still alive, that points to hopeful.""I understand. . . . Frank, can you help me out?""I spent the evening in the company of good friends, Anders. I got to bed at 1:00 and no doubt I have an impressive blood alcohol content.""I'll make the decisions and do the surgery. But I need somebody to tell me if I'm doing anything stupid. Even a falling-down drunk Professor Ellis is several classes better than I could ever be when it comes to assessing brain damage.""OK, I'll come. But you're going to owe me one.""I'll have a taxi waiting outside by the time you get down to the lobby. The driver will know where to drop you, and a nurse will be there to meet you and get you scrubbed in.""I had a patient a number of years ago, in Boston-I wrote about the case in the New England Journal of Medicine. It was a girl the same age as your patient here. She was walking to the university when someone shot her with a crossbow. The arrow entered at the outside edge of her left eyebrow and went straight through her head, exiting from almost the middle of the back of her neck.""And she survived?""She looked like nothing on earth when she came in. We cut off the arrow shaft and put her head in a CT scanner. The arrow went straight through her brain. By all known reckoning she should have been dead, or at least suffered such massive trauma that she would have been in a coma.""And what was her condition?""She was conscious the whole time. Not only that; she was terribly frightened, of course, but she was completely rational. Her only problem was that she had an arrow through her skull.""What did you do?""Well, I got the forceps and pulled out the arrow and bandaged the wounds. More or less.""And she lived to tell the tale?""Obviously her condition was critical, but the fact is we could have sent her home the same day. I've seldom had a healthier patient."Jonasson wondered whether Ellis was pulling his leg."On the other hand," Ellis went on, "I had a forty-two-year-old patient in Stockholm some years ago who banged his head on a windowsill. He began to feel sick immediately and was taken by ambulance to the ER. When I got to him he was unconscious. He had a small bump and a very slight bruise. But he never regained consciousness and died after nine days in intensive care. To this day I have no idea why he died. In the autopsy report, we wrote brain haemorrhage resulting from an accident, but not one of us was satisfied with that assessment. The bleeding was so minor, and located in an area that shouldn't have affected anything else at all. And yet his liver, kidneys, heart, and lungs shut down one after the other. The older I get, the more I think it's like a game of roulette. I don't believe we'll ever figure out precisely how the brain works." He tapped on the X-ray with a pen. "What do you intend to do?""I was hoping you would tell me.""Let's hear your diagnosis.""Well, first of all, it seems to be a small-calibre bullet. It entered at the temple, and then stopped about four centimetres into the brain. It's resting against the lateral ventricle. There's bleeding there.""How will you proceed?""To use your terminology, get some forceps and extract the bullet by the same route it went in.""Excellent idea. I would use the thinnest forceps you have.""It's that simple?""What else can we do in this case? We could leave the bullet where it is, and she might live to be a hundred, but it's also a risk. She might develop epilepsy, migraines, all sorts of complaints. And one thing you really don't want to do is drill into her skull and then operate a year from now when the wound itself has healed. The bullet is located away from the major blood vessels. So I would recommend that you extract it, but . . .""But what?""The bullet doesn't worry me so much. She's survived this far and that's a good omen for her getting through having the bullet removed too. The real problem is here." He pointed at the X-ray. "Around the entry wound you have all sorts of bone fragments. I can see at least a dozen that are a couple of millimetres long. Some are embedded in the brain tissue. That's what could kill her if you're not careful.""Isn't that part of the brain associated with numbers and mathematical capacity?" Jonasson said.Ellis shrugged. "Mumbo jumbo. I have no idea what these particular grey cells are for. You can only do your best. You operate. I'll look over your shoulder."Mikael Blomkvist looked up at the clock and saw that it was just after 3:00 in the morning. He was handcuffed and increasingly uncomfortable. He closed his eyes for a moment. He was dead tired but running on adrenaline. He opened them again and gave the policeman an angry glare. Inspector Thomas Paulsson had a shocked expression on his face. They were sitting at a kitchen table in a white farmhouse called Gosseberga, somewhere near Nossebro. Blomkvist had heard of the place for the first time less than twelve hours earlier.There was no denying the disaster that had occurred."Imbecile," Blomkvist said."Now, you listen here-""Imbecile," Blomkvist said again. "I warned you he was dangerous, for Christ's sake. I told you that you would have to handle him like a live grenade. He's murdered at least three people with his bare hands and he's built like a tank. And you send a couple of village policemen to arrest him as if he were some Saturday night drunk."Blomkvist shut his eyes again, wondering what else could go wrong that night.He had found Lisbeth Salander just after midnight. She was very badly wounded. He had sent for the police and the Rescue Service.The only thing that had gone right was that he had persuaded them to send a helicopter to take the girl to Sahlgrenska hospital. He had given them a clear description of her injuries and the bullet wound in her head, and some bright spark at the Rescue Service got the message.Even so, it had taken over half an hour for the Puma from the helicopter unit in Säve to arrive at the farmhouse. Blomkvist had gotten two cars out of the barn. He switched on their headlights to illuminate a landing area in the field in front of the house.The helicopter crew and two paramedics had proceeded in a routine and professional manner. One of the medics tended to Salander while the other took care of Alexander Zalachenko, known locally as Karl Axel Bodin. Zalachenko was Salander's father and her worst enemy. He had tried to kill her, but he had failed. Blomkvist had found him in the woodshed at the farm with a nasty-looking gash-probably from an axe- in his face and some shattering damage to one of his legs which Blomkvist did not bother to investigate.

Editorial Reviews

“A thoroughly gripping read . . . 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 . . . Owes less to the Silence of the Lambs horror genre than to something by John le Carré.”—Michiko Kakutani, New York Times  “The literary equivalent of a caffeine rush . . . Larsson was one of those rare writers who could keep you up until 3 a.m. and then make you want to rush home the next night to do it again . . . Larsson is something like John Grisham [but] Larsson held an extra ace: the creation of Salander.”—Newsweek “It’s over! And I feel the same sense of pleasure and loss that I did when I watched the finale of ‘The Sopranos’ and the last episodes of ‘Battlestar Galactica’ . . . Salander is, I promise, someone you will never forget . . . 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.”—Alan Cheuse, Chicago Tribune "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."—Guardian“A heart-stopping showdown showcases one of crime fiction’s most unforgettable characters—and cements Larsson’s rep as one of its most passionate and original voices.”—People  “Confirms Larsson as one of the great talents of contemporary crime fiction.”—Sunday Times (UK) “Exhilarating . . . Larsson’s was an undeniably powerful voice in crime fiction that will be sorely missed.”—Publishers Weekly “Fast-paced enough to make those Jason Bourne films seem like Regency dramas.”—Kirkus Reviews “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.”—The Economist “There are few characters as formidable as Lisbeth Salander in contemporary fiction of any kind . . . She dominates the stage like Lear . . . She will be sorely missed.”—Booklist“Larsson’s work is original, inventive, shocking, disturbing, and challenging . . . His novels have brought a much needed freshness into the world of crime fiction.”—Times (UK) "Fans will not be disappointed: this is another roller-coaster ride that keeps you reading far too late into the night."—Evening Standard