Tuesday 11 May 2010

The Man Who Left Too Soon

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


Elizabeth Spann Craig said...

The bio's title is perfect, isn't it? Such a shame that he wasn't around to enjoy his success or to write us more books.

Mystery Writing is Murder

David Cranmer said...

I will read The Man Who Left Too Soon because I want to know more about this extraordinary talent.

And fingers are crossed the film does justice to this future classic.

Anonymous said...

Martin - This does sound like an interesting book! I'm going to try to find it.

Martin Edwards said...

Elizabeth - well said, it is a great title.
David, I share your hope about the film.
Margot, I'm sure it will appear in your neck of the woods before long!

pattinase (abbott) said...

The movie is excellent. Truly up to the level of the book. Well, close. It leaves some of it out, but nothing essential except the promiscuity of our hero.