Study Guide

The Girl Who Played With Fire Chapter 1

By Stieg Larsson

Chapter 1

Thursday, December 16 – Friday, December 17

  • Lisbeth Salander sits by the pool at a hotel, watching the woman from room 32.
  • The woman and her husband are staying in the room next to Salander's.
  • Each night, Salander hears them argue and hears the husband hitting his wife.
  • Salander has been traveling and is now in the city of St. George, on the island of Grenada.
  • Journalist Mikael Blomkvist is at Salander's apartment in Stockholm, Sweden.
  • He's sure Salander won't answer, but he comes once a week, just in case. Back at his apartment, he thinks of her.
  • (Flashback to some of the events of Girl With the Dragon Tattoo: Salander saves Blomkvist's life and helps him find a serial killer. Salander, hacker-name Wasp, is one of the best hackers alive, and has a photographic memory. Her hacking skills help Blomkvist expose a huge financial fraud, known as "The Wennerström Affair." But then Salander, now his lover, cuts him out of her life without explanation.)
  • After a shower, Salander looks at herself in the mirror in her hotel room.
  • She had breast implants in Italy and is pleased with the results.
  • Back in the lobby, Salander hears that a hurricane is due to hit Grenada.
  • She learns that the man in room 32 is named Dr. Forbes and arranges a background check.
  • Next, she visits her friend George Bland, a sixteen-year-old student, at his shack. (Flashback.)
  • Salander first met George on the beach, where he was struggling with his algebra homework. She helped him with math, and they soon become lovers.
  • (Salander is 26. In Sweden, the "age of consent" is 15.)
  • Salander leaves Bland's shack around 2am. She has a hammer to protect herself from bad guys.
  • On the beach, she sees Dr. Forbes from room 32, and thinks he's up to no good, in general.