After briefly summarizing the anti-Semitic atmosphere under which Alfred Dreyfus was falsely accused, convicted, and imprisoned for treason by France military and political authorities, Begley makes a powerful case that current anti-Muslim feelings in the U.S. has led to the comparable incarceration (without trial) of Muslim prisoners in Guantanamo. Point well taken. The book is short, but so densely written that it is hard to follow if you are not already familiar with the case. Keeping the players straight is very hard work, which is rarely a good thing if you want to keep readers reading.
The by now famous protagonist, Lisbeth Salander, is once again assaulted, chased, and utterly alone. The plot contains full doses of sex and violence, the writing is average, dialogue flat, and the translation clunky. Aside from Salander’s pure adherence to justice the characters are not terribly interesting. Thus, I read the book trying to figure out the appeal of Larson’s Millennium Trilogy and why every person on the beach was carrying one of the books. Since I could count more things going against the book, than for it, I never really figured its mass appeal. I’ll admit, however, I couldn’t put the book down, either. I’m guessing it is Salander’s unbending fight against unadulterated evil that appeals to us.