Saturday, 25 March 2017


I am thinking of rereading Stieg Larsson's Millennium Trilogy yet again. I have previously found ways to discuss the Trilogy in relation to Poul Anderson's works (see here):

Swedish setting;
intelligence services;
political issues;
authentic characterization;
a monumental behind-the-scenes villain;
computer technology that would have been sf earlier in our lifetimes;
hypothetical crossovers, e.g., has the Time Patrol penetrated Swedish Intelligence?

Reopening Vol I, I find a purely formal parallel with some of Poul Anderson's novels: a brief background-establishing Prologue that can be skipped on rereading.

As Anderson's Time Patrol series progressed, its author adopted the practice of dating each new chapter or narrative passage. This is particularly helpful in time travel fiction. Larsson's Prologue is dated "A Friday in November." His Part 1 covers "20.xii-3.1" and his Chapter 1 is dated "20.xii." Thus, the chronological sequence is tightly controlled although we are not told what year(s). But the setting is very up-to-date.

On rereading, we can pause and appreciate details not noticed before or forgotten since, e.g.:

Anderson fans, what is Manse Everard's full name?
Larsson fans, what is Mikael Blomkvist's full name?


Ketlan said...

No idea about Manse Everard but Blomkvist's full name is Carl Mikael Blomkvist, according to the Swedish Wikipedia, and his nickname is Kalle.

Sean M. Brooks said...

Kaor, Paul!

I checked "Time Patrol," and Manse's seldom used full name is Manson Emmert Everard.

And we do see intelligent work in the works of Poul Anderson, most clearly in the Dominic Flandry stories. See esp. ENSIGN FLANDRY, WE CLAIM THESE STARS, and A KNIGHT OF GHOSTS AND SHADOWS, because of the discussions about the methods of intelligence work seen in those stories.

It might be interesting to know how many of Poul Anderson's works were translated into Swedish, and whether Stieg Larsson read any of them. Esp. the Time Patrol and Flandry stories.