Rumors of the fourth ‘The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo’ book surface


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When Swedish author Stieg Larsson died in 2004, he couldn’t have imagined what a blockbuster international bestseller his ‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ mystery series would become.

The three books -- published in the U.S. as ‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo,’ ‘The Girl Who Played With Fire’ and ‘The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets’ Nest’ -- are collectively called ‘The Millennium Series.’ There are only those three -- but maybe there’s a fourth.


Both his surviving family and his longtime girlfriend claim they’ve seen it. There have been rumors that either party may publish it. And Monday, the Hollywood Reporter wrote that a friend has told a Swedish newspaper about the contents of the manuscript of the fourth book, which Larsson left behind.

Larsson confidant Kurdo Baksi told Swedish daily paper the Expressen that Camilla, the estranged twin sister of Millennium’s goth hacker heroine Lisbeth Salander, plays a major role in the fourth book. Camilla was seen only briefly in the second Millennium novel, The Girl Who Played With Fire. Baksi is quoted in Expressen as saying the fourth novel is set on the remote Banks Island in Canada and further deepens the relationship between Salander and investigative journalist Mikael Blomqvist. Baksi, whose book My friend Stieg Larsson was a best-seller last year, added that before he died Larsson completed a detailed introduction and a finale to the fourth book. Larsson died suddenly in 2004, before the three Millennium books were published. But it’s been widely reported that he had plans for a series of five or six books.

Larsson’s family and his girlfriend, Eva Gabrielsson, have been tussling over the author’s estate and the possible continuation of the ‘Millennium Series.’ Gabrielsson and Larsson declined to get married as a political move, but that has meant that her legal standing is tenuous at best. Gabrielsson -- who is thought to be something of a model for the radical heroine Lisbeth Salander -- has been fighting for her place in Larsson’s legacy, and has said she has a manuscript for his fourth book that she can finish.

In October 2010, Larsson’s brother Joakim told ‘CBS Sunday Morning’ that his brother had emailed him the manuscript 10 days before he died.

Paul Bogards, the publicity manager for Knopf, the series’ American publisher, told The Times that the fourth book is ‘a subject of much speculation among Larsson readers. At some point, one hopes that there is a finality to the question about the fourth book.’

The Swedish film adaptations launched the career of actress Noomi Rapace. The American version is much anticipated: ‘The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo’ directed by David Fincher and starring Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig is expected in December.



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-- Carolyn Kellogg