The Girl in the Spider's Web is a continuation of the Millenium Trilogy, written by David Lagercrantz, as the original author and creator of Lisbeth Salander's world has passed away. I was initially skeptical of reading this, because I loved Larsson even though the Millenium Trilogy was an emotionally heavy piece of literature. I had my doubts as to whether Lagercrantz can do justice to the complex and infinitely interesting character that is Lisbeth Salander.
Although the main villain in the Millenium Trilogy, Zalachenko, is now dead, his legacy lives on in. In The Girl in the Spider's Web, the reader is teased by a slow revelation of the villain. I'm glad, though, that hints here and there are dropped, but not too much or enough to piece it together too early. We are also given more insight into Salander's childhood, and I just fell in love with her even more.
By the time I turned the last page, I was smiling. Lagercrantz's writing style was noticeably different from Larsson's, but I loved Salander no less. He didn't lose Salander's hard edge but also gave her maturity and character development as is befitting the progression of the story.
The noticeable difference between Larsson and Lagercrantz's writing, is that the former had set a darker tone to the story and the violence, most notably rape and physical harm, was described in heavy detail. If you let yourself, you can almost imagine how it plays out -- and that is not for the light of heart. But Lagercrantz's style is not detailed and violence mostly comes in the form of gun fights. If The Girl in the Spider's Web was turned into a movie, I can almost imagine the violent parts fading into black.
If another Lisbeth Salander novel comes out – and the ending hints at the possibility – I would definitely read it. I highly recommend The Girl in the Spider's Web to all Lisbeth Salander fans. If you're new to the Salander story, you could read The Girl in the Spider's Web without having to read the first three books if they are too violent for you. However, I do recommend reading all four to get a better grasp of how Lisbeth Salander's mind works and for a fuller appreciation of her story.
Happy New Year! :)