The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo moves back and forth between consensual, pleasant sex and hideous rapes. The positive, happy sex (of which there's a fair amount) is sexy but understated, without graphics. It's as much about exploring relationships and trying to find intimacy and trust as it is about physical pleasure. Blomkvist and Salander, both sexual adventurers, end up taking down sexual predators. The rapes are recounted and remembered in details too lurid for some readers, who feel that the depictions contribute to problems of sexual assault. Other feel the graphic details are necessary to wake readers up to the issue. As with Alice Sebold's The Lovely Bones, a novel that probably shared the bestseller list with Tattoo at some point, this story constantly contrasts consensual sexual relationships with abusive, non-consensual ones.