Stieg Larsson: My Friend

StiegLarsson.jpgThe Millennium Trilogy, the series of novels that begins with The Girl With The Dragon Tatoo is the literary sensation of the decade. Three novels featuring the remarkable computer hacker Lisbeth Slander and the crusading journalist Mikael Blomkvist take place in a truly dark version of Sweden. Racism, sexism, violence, corruption and a venal media run all the way through. This unlikely combination has become a world wide bestseller with nearly 50 million copies sold and no sign of letting up. The release of Hollywood films based on the three novels beginning next year are expected to make the superstar author a mega star.

What makes the story even more intriguing is that the author, Stieg Larsson died at the age of 50 in 2004 just as the first of the books was being published, and no one was more surprised by his posthumous success then his friends. Larsson had spent most of his adult life as a anti-racism activist and muck-raking journalist. Very few people suspected that he was also a wanna be thriller writer just waiting for his big break.

Among those most surprised by the direction Larsson's life and reputation has taken since his death is Kurdo Baksi. Mr. Baksi is a Kurdish refugee who moved to Stockholm in his teens. He went on to be a leader in the anti-racism movement and it was in this guise that he first met Stieg Larsson. The two became best friends and collaborators.

When Stieg Larsson died unexpectedly of a heart attack, and then became famous world-wide for his literary skills, Kurdo Baksi went into a bit of tailspin. He needed to find out everything he could about a man he had know intimately for more than a decade. And that proved to be more difficult than he imagined. Kurdo Baksi has written a memoir about Stieg Larsson and it raises some truly interesting questions about the most surprising literary superstar of our time. The memoir, Stieg Larsson: My Friend has just been published and this morning, Kurdo Baksi was in a studio in Stockholm.

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