The Farce Side
Discovering the strange relationship between two apparently dissimilar novels
by Lawrence Douglas
$15.95 List Price
In Sweden, according to Lars Arffssen's recent novel, "Nordic Dullness Syndrome" affects millions. The country's mores are hard to parse: While "semi-consensual intercourse with a drowsy woman" constitutes a despicable crime, its citizens conduct adulterous affairs so nonchalantly that the husband is often sitting in the same room, distracted by his iPad. The book's delirious plotlines extend to an IKEA-like company's shadowy past, but the central mystery gets announced early on: "Why would anyone want to decapitate an unpublished author of Swedish thrillers?"
Arffssen's The Girl with the Sturgeon Tattoo, if you haven't guessed, is a shameless spoof of Stieg Larsson's The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. Larsson's dynamic duo, lithe and lethal waif-hacker Lisbeth Salander and investigative reporter Mikael Blomkvist,
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