Wednesday, 19 May 2010

Millenniumitis strikes the Tube

Do you ever get that feeling that you've become a sucker?  You've allowed a marketing craze, or a word-of-mouth craze to pull you in, extract your money and spit you out?  It can happen almost imperceptibly.  You start seeing images of a girl's naked back with a dragon tattoo while walking past what constitutes a book shop these days - a third of an aisle in Tesco.  Then you start seeing people reading said book with image of naked girl's back.  Then you hear the odd piece on the radio about a "literary phenomenon".  Perhaps you Google the author to see what all the fuss is about.  Next a friend mentions on Facebook that they're reading it...the word-of-mouth phase is under-way...the rest is predictable history...

I knew I'd become another willing victim of this particular literary whirlwind when I got on the Tube this morning and in the single section by the double doors I was one of three who were reading a book in Stieg Larsson's Millennium trilogy.

Fortunately, unlike the last time this kind of thing happened - the Harry Potter craze - we needn't hang our heads in shame or disguise our covers with the sleeve of an Alain de Botton book in order to retain credibility...

No, we share a strange sense of brotherhood.  We know we're reading a great, intelligent, rip-roaring story of relevance to our fragile times, by a tragic author who died before he realised just how commercially successful is writing would become.  We are willing victims of Millenniumitis and I thoroughly encourage you to get infected as soon as possible.

Oh, and I'm only 67 pages into the first novel...

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