You can’t buy it.
But the buzz is unbelievable. Readers feel triumphant, special, like they’re members of a cult. Does this remind you of the way it used to be in the music business?
Start reading "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo". Just buy it. Don’t check with your friends, the price is not outrageous, give it fifty or a hundred pages.
Actually, it doesn’t take that long. Far before that, you’ll be hooked.
There’s no video, no outrageous outfits like Lady GaGa, none of the penumbra that saddles music today. Remember when music was enough? That’s how it is with Stieg Larsson’s "Millennium Trilogy", the story is enough.
As soon as you finish "The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo", you’ll buy "The Girl Who Played With Fire". Nobody stops at book one, hell, they’re thrilled there’s a sequel. Kind of like buying the first album by a new act, spinning it to death, and finding out there’s already a second, just as good!
But imagine that second album ending in the middle of a song. That’s what reading "The Girl Who Played With Fire" is like. You’ve got to read the third book, "The Girl Who Kicked The Hornets’ Nest" to find out what happened to Lisbeth Salander. Is she alive, is she dead?
I’m not telling.
But I will say that for a book that’s unavailable in the U.S., that needs to be ordered via subterfuge, from the U.K., it’s astounding how many copies I see in my everyday life. People carry them around like trophies. And when you interrupt them, to ask them about it, they greet you with open arms, they want to talk about the trilogy.
This is so different from the way the music business has played out, which is now like the cocaine 80′s. Who’s holding, can I get in the bathroom with the cool people to partake? The stars are behind a wall, playing a game known as fame, which is separate from their music, just read the gossip blogs to find out. And if you want to get closer, you can’t, you just can’t get a good seat. Because you don’t have an Amex card or you’re not rich enough or even after joining the so-called "fan club", you’re still offered overpriced, shitty tickets.
People love the work, even people who haven’t read a book in years. There’s just something about the story, which isn’t lowest-common denominator, which is not solely plot, which requires some intelligence to juggle all the characters and scenes in your mind.
Imagine a band that’s truly great, that is sans hype, that makes it solely because of the music. Which then releases its next album on the Internet, but doesn’t allow you to buy it. Can you imagine how fast the music would spread?
But, but, but, I need to get PAID!
The musicians are as bad as Wall Street robber barons. Starting out with how much money they want to make in a year, they rape and pillage to get it, not caring that they add not a whit to the social fabric. Hey, it’s my new album, you’ve got to buy it! And come see me in concert, where I prance to pyrotechnics at far too high a price!
Books aren’t featured in the gossip columns. Stieg Larsson can’t do interviews, he’s dead. But the work he left behind is creating a frenzy. Which is not being fed by the mainstream media, but the reading public. If anything, it’s seeping into the press as a result of reader fanaticism. The way the newspaper used to be last on a new act, as opposed to first, today being whipped into shape by the label, hyped to death.
We’ve all been hyped to death.
But the "Millennium Trilogy" is something different.
Join the cult. You’ll be fulfilled, you’ll be proud, you’ll be titillated, you’ll be thrilled, the same way you were when you attached yourself to the great bands of yore.