Page 261. That’s the pivotal point where the two main characters meet.
Mikael Blomkvist: crusading journalist recently at the wrong end of a libel case, and Lisbeth Salander: 24-year-old pierced and tattooed genius hacker possessed of the hard-earned wisdom of someone twice her age – and a terrifying capacity for ruthlessness to go with it.
Mikael has been hired to research the 40-year-old disappearance of a wealthy octogenarian’s 16-year-old niece, Harriet Vanger. When he realizes that he needs help with the convoluted archive work, Herr Vanger actually recommends the researcher he hired to look into Mikael. Now that’s a set-up for a good meet if I ever read one!
Mikael arrives on Lisbeth’s doorstep unannounced, rousing her from a hung-over lie-in. She’s disheveled and bewildered; he’s curiously amused.
And all I can think about is the bagels.
Filled bagels, brought by Mikael: one with roast beef, one with turkey and Dijon mustard, and one vegetarian with avocado.
Well, now I have to stop reading and hit up Google, because I have no idea if “filled” means the bagel is cooked with a filling, like a stuffed bread, or if it’s simply a bagel sliced open and “filled” with meats and/or veggies like a sandwich. Of course, I find all sorts of pictures and recipes for both types and no definitive answer as to which kind is in Mikael’s bag. I even watched the movie to solve this important (to me, at least) secondary mystery, but Daniel Craig never unwraps the white deli paper! I finally decide to just assume these bagels must be the sandwich type, because hot, baked-in avocado sounds disgusting. And I need to get back to the darn book. ;)
Anyway, they meet at last! There are bagels, coffee, compliments and confessions…and the first taste of how these 2 characters play off of one another is so delicious, readers should be prepared to devour the rest of the story in one sitting. ;)