Swedish author of the Millennium trilogyStieg Larsson, [The Girl with the Dragon tattoo] died prematurely at the age of 50 from a heart attack, never knowing how successful his trilogy would become, but now it appears he finished a fourth novel that was recently discovered by his long-term girlfriend Eva Gabrielsson. 

However, there is an enormous caveat that is frustrating and relieving at the same time. Larsson’s brother Joakim told CBS Sunday about receiving word about the mysterious fourth novel shortly before his brother’s death. 

“I got an e-mail from Stieg 10 days before he died, where he said that book four is nearly finished,” he said. “To make it more complicated, this book No. 4 — that’s book No. 5, because he thought that was more fun to write.” 

Instead of completing the fourth novel in order, Larsson actually skipped ahead to finish the fifth chronologically first. That means there is likely a missing narrative connection between the third film and this novel, as he clearly didn’t plan on having a heart attack. But now whether the book even gets published is doubtful as well. Larssons family do not want to publish the book, even if if it is in completed form. Gabrielsson’s involvement in this is limited. While she was Larrson’s live-in girlfriend for over 32 years, the couple never got married and Swedish law doesn’t recognize common-law union. Additionally, the two sides can’t seem to come to an agreement on Stieg’s $20 million inheritance, as he didn’t write anything directly in his will stating Eva had legal claim to his works.

As for the setting of the fourth novel, Stieg’s friend John-Henri Holmberg told CBS that he gleaned from an email less than a month before the author’s death.

“The plot is set 120 kilometers north of Sachs Harbour, at Banks Island in the month of September,” the email reportedly reads. “Did you know that 134 people live in Sachs Harbour, whose only contact with the world is a postal plane twice a week when the weather permits? But there are 48,000 musk-ox and 80 different types of wild flowers that bloom during two weeks in early July, as well as an estimated 1,500 polar bears.”

With the third film in the Swedish trilogy already made in the native Swedish language, and a David Fincher remake in the works, the window of opportunity to get this fourth book released has never been bigger. But it will shrink fast and if Gabrielsson, who reportedly helped with the first three novels, can’t get the manuscript published.

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