The Girl Who Lived Twice by David Lagercrantz

by Kristopher Cook
Time to Read: 2 minutes

What’s left of the Millennium series? A once loved suspenseful series that’s being wheeled out on an annual basis to line the pockets of the Larsson family. How can Lisbeth’s character ever recover the lows of An Eye for an Eye?

A good book would be a start.

Thankfully, The Girl Who Lived Twice goes some way towards making amends for previous Lagercrantz titles.

Gone are the James Bond-style plots, supervillains and all, returning with a much more grounded approach this time.

This is the first of the Lagercrantz series that feels like the style created by Stieg Larsson; Mystery and suspense over action set-pieces.

Although the book’s focus of family is nothing new, we are at least treated to a seething hatred that this time comes to an adequate conclusion. This rounds the book off well, making it a much better read with satisfying plot points for the characters to move along to.

The main story centres on Camilla, Lisbeth’s sister, who this time is looking to exact vengeance on behalf of her Father, Zalachenko.

Convoluted spider webs (ignore the pun), and super-thugs have been replaced by a more obvious motive; revenge.

Everyone’s entitled to an identity in death. To a name, and a history.

David Lagercrantz, Chapter 3

The subplot revolves around an anonymous homeless man who dies without any form of identification. Was it an accidental overdose, suicide, or poisoning?

Both Blomkvist and Salander are on the case to solve the mystery that also intertwines with current Swedish Defence Minister, Johannes Forsell, along with a disastrous hiking expedition up Mount Everest a few years prior.

The finale of a Legacy

I wasn’t overly pleased with the final few chapters.

Sure, the story was credible, but we are reintroduced to ‘Lisbeth the action hero’, whereas the build-up had a much more realistic approach. This is, however, leaps and bounds above the previous instalments.

I guess beggars can’t be choosers.

The plot is thoroughly detailed, and subtle hints are dropped about the sub-plots mystery if you keep your eyes open, although the reasons why it happened aren’t revealed until the finale.

It’s these mysteries that take me back to the original Girl with the Dragon Tattoo book. It’s so full of unknown and deceit that you’re always guessing until the end.

While not as intriguing as the first book, it does go, by some means, towards renewing my interest in the series.

It does round off the series well, closing all remaining plots and giving meaningful endings to all of its main characters.

Closing Thoughts

If you’ve read The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo series up to this point, then I’d recommend reading this new episode. It’s the closest you’ll get to a Stieg Larsson adaption, with the return to suspense over action.

However, the road to this point is rocky, as you’ll gather from my reviews of the previous two books by Lagercrantz.

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