Okay, I've been a total book worm since yesterday afternoon. I have been reading (and just finished) the novel, "The Girl with a Dragon Tattoo" nonstop practically since yesterday evening. I believe that I covered around 400 pages in that time. Let that be a testiment to how good this book is.
I know, I know... there is a bunch of hype about this series. Last September when I initially bought the book, I had every intintion to read it right away. My first attempt was futile, because the book is really slow to start and confusing to boot. I gave up nearly immediately and decided I would just wait it out and pick it up another time. I will say that the first 100-150 pages are almost purely back story and preliminary information so you understand the main aspect and climax of the novel. Soldier through it, the book is worth it in the end. While reading the opening, try not to get hung up too much on the character names (there are A LOT), the places that the characters are (since the book is based in Sweden a lot of the locations are unfamiliar), and some of the political references can be a little daunting. As the storyline progresses the main characters will emerge and there's really no need to focus on the other obscure characters that will cross your path.
I highly recommend this novel, once you get into the inner workings of it, it is very difficult to put down. I stayed up until 2 am last night reading and when I fell asleep, I did so with a nightlight on... Not joking...
One of the things I really appreciate about this book is that it is written really well. A lot of the novels I have read are good but are mainstreamed and simplified so that the reading level is equivalent to that of a middle schooler. I honestly cannot say that about this novel. Stieg Larsson did an amazing job with this book. The next step for me is to watch the film to see how it compares before moving onto the next novel. =)
I tried watching the film on Netflix Instant Queue and I must say that I was not impressed. Of course it may be because it is a foreign film, but I thought that the movie didn't come close to doing the book justice. I ended up closing out of it half-way through the film. I'm hoping that the 2011 version of the film is considerably better... We'll see though.