Southern Scotch

Southern Scotch

Friday, September 9, 2011

Stieg Larsson Never Said 'But Mommmmmmmmmm, Everybody's Doing It!'

In fact, his terrific trilogy could never have been published in the U.S. first.  Not with the original title, Men Who Hate Women.  And not with Lisbeth Salander as Larsson had portrayed her--a borderline psycho who bucks The Great Law:  Readers must have a likable lead...,who must be shown as likable within the first five pages.  Furthermore, Larsson seems not to have heard certain pressing Lesser Laws:  Avoid long passages of dialog...Avoid summary mode...Show, don't tell...Avoid back story...Or maybe Stieg had heard these Laws but decided to do it his own way instead.

The irony has grown acute:  agents and publishers who wouldn't have given the great Swede a dime are now looking for the next Larsson. 

The three books Big Daddy Stieg left us are flawed.  But I'll take each one of them as is over pretty much anything else on the shelves.  I salute his independence, his non-herd mentality and his stubborn refusal to cave to the Laws cowards and clones rush to follow.

Come on, Big Daddy, smile on us and on our own Law-breaking mystery.

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