The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, By Stieg Larsson, trans Reg Keeland

In 2004 the Swedish writer Stieg Larsson, died after delivering a trilogy of thrillers to his publisher. His posthumous debut scaled the bestseller lists, and, if you can indulge his taste for corporate cover-ups, you can see why.

Carrying the book is an unlikely double act: Mikael Blom-kvist, a disgraced middle-aged journalist, and Lisbeth Salander, a young computer hacker with a taste for body art.

They meet when Blomkvist is approached by rich industrialist, Henrik Vanger, to investigate the long-ago disappearance of his great-niece from a family gathering. Misogyny and murder stalk the pages of a novel that exposes the flip-side of Scandinavian liberalism: a landscape readers have come to know well.

Luckily for us, Larsson's second instalment promises return appearances from all involved.

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