The Guardian recently revealed details about deceased cult author Stieg Larsson’s unfinished fourth book in his bestselling Millennium Trilogy. Ignore for a moment that a fourth book negates the series being a trilogy (we’ve forgiven Douglas Adams, natch), and let’s instead focus on what, via Larsson’s friend John-Henri Holmburg, we know about the novel: it’s set in a remote area of northern Canada, where 134 people, 48,000 musk-ox and 1,500 polar bears live. Also, per Holmburg, “According to the synopsis it should be 440 pages.”
Based around these astute observations, what can ravenous readers predict about the next Millennium Trilogy novel, which we’ve taken to calling The Girl Who Did Something?
1. More killer less filler: As the shortest book featuring tattooed hacker Lisbeth Salander and Mikael Blomkvist, Larsson’s literary alter-ego, the fourth would need to lose the studied balance of romance and intense action that filled the first three to the brim. Our guess is that this time around, the on-again off-again Blomkvist/Salander heat will chill (especially given the way The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest ended), and instead we’ll see nothing but Salander kicking ass and taking names.
2. Location: The previous three entries in the Millennium Trilogy have all focused primarily in Sweden, to a degree that’s made that cold wonderland as much a character as any other in Larsson’s books. For the setting to jump to Canada, the country must figure drastically into the book’s clockwork gears of a plot. What could necessitate the jump across the globe? Possibly a giant Canadian crime ring. We never trusted those Canadians, anyway.
3. Family: Hasn’t every familial angle possible been exhausted in these books? Remember the giant chart meant to plot out the Vanger family in The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo? Larsson was obsessed with genealogy, and weaved the thread heavily into each of the books in the Millennium Trilogy. The fourth will likely be the same, possibly focusing on some skeletons in the Blomkvist closet — a kidnapped relative who just happens to be a Canadian sympathizer, perhaps?
4. There Will Be Blood: The books in the Millennium Triolgy get more violent and brutal as the series progresses, culminating in the bloodbath that is the last half of The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet’s Nest. We expect that to be peanuts and candy-corn compared to what Larsson will have Salander get herself into in the fourth book. After all, we’ve seen hockey, we know what happens to blood when it hits ice… and it’s pretty cool.
5. Sandwiches: No, really, what does anyone in the first three books do when they’re not solving crime or kicking ass other than make sandwiches? Nothing. We will be totally disappointed if this tradition is broken.