Ever since Stieg Larsson’s first novel, The Girl with the Dragon Tatttoo, was posthumously published to enormous acclaim, first in his native Sweden, and before long around the world, Larsson mania has gripped the world of crime fiction world. This is in part because of the excellence of his Millennium trilogy, but also because of the remarkable story surrounding it, not least the tragic fact that the author died before he became a global phenomenon. I must say that I am really looking forward to watching the film version of The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.
Now Barry Forshaw has published Larsson’s biography, neatly titled The Man Who Left Too Soon, published by John Blake Publishing. One of the features of the book is that the author has called upon various contemporary crime writers to share their thoughts about Larsson and his work, and I should declare that I am one of them. Even so, I think it is reasonable for me to say that this is a book that will contain a great deal of interest for Larsson fans – even if they skip the page of so devoted to my ruminations!
Barry Forshaw is a very experienced journalist with a deep knowledge of the crime genre, who was until recently Vice Chair of the Crime Writers’ Association. He has reviewed widely, and I first came across him through his editorship of Crime Time, an excellent resource. Barry also wrote The Rough Guide to Crime Fiction and the wonderful (again, I must admit to having contributed a few essays, but the rest of it is definitely wonderful!) British Crime Writing: An Encyclopaedia. He is an excellent choice for authorship of a book of this kind, and I can’t imagine that Larsson’s admirers, and those interested in finding out more about him, will be disappointed by this timely publication