Review: Eva Gabrielsson pens a strangely rendered story of life with Stieg Larsson in 'There Are Things I Want You to Know'

The memoir by Eva Gabrielsson, life partner of the late Stieg Larsson, author of the Millennium series — The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and its sequels — is a bizarre piece of writing.

On some pages Gabrielsson sounds robotic, as if she's dutifully testifying before a jury about minutiae: "Coffee was for both of us an extraordinary remedy for all kinds of misfortunes great or small. … Although we experimented with every possible way of preparing the brew, we always fell back on percolated coffee."

Then, an apocalyptic anger erupts after she relates another setback in the legal battle over her partner's estate. "Let justice be done, though all the world perish." Maybe a mug of that coffee would have been in order.

The fact that the style of this memoir is so erratic and that Gabrielsson acknowledges a co-writer, Marie-Francoise Colombani, should lay to rest the rumors that Gabrielsson wrote part of the Millennium books. Overall, the book sorely tries a reader's sympathies, even those of us feminists who feel that Gabrielsson got a raw deal when it came to sharing the Larsson spoils after his death in 2004 at the age of 50.

Larsson's father and brother were recognized as the rightful heirs of his estate. The war over Larsson's literary estate is ongoing, with Gabrielsson holding hostage her one golden asset: approximately 200 pages of a fourth Millennium novel.

'There Are Things I Want You to Know' about Stieg Larsson and Me

By Eva Gabrielsson with Marie-Francoise Colombani; translated from the French by Linda Coverdale

Seven Stories, 209 pages, $23.95

Review: Eva Gabrielsson pens a strangely rendered story of life with Stieg Larsson in 'There Are Things I Want You to Know' 07/16/11 [Last modified: Saturday, July 16, 2011 5:30am]

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