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The girl who lived with Stieg Larsson

Stieg Larsson, who died in 2004, is known internationally as the best-selling author of the Millennium trilogy: The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, The Girl Who Played with Fire, and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (which is currently at the centre of a broken embargo controversy here in Canada). However, according the Sydney Morning Herald, Larsson was at work on a fourth manuscript in the series when he died. That manuscript is currently on a laptop in the possession of Eva Gabrielsson, Larsson’s longtime companion.

However, because the couple never married, and Larsson died intestate, the rights to administer the Millennium series go to the author’s father and brother under Swedish law. Gabrielsson thinks this is unfair and is refusing to release the fourth manuscript until she is granted full rights to the Millennium series.

Three Larsson fans “ Anne Wiik Nilsen, Gry Finsrud, and Jan M. Moberg “ feel that Gabrielsson has been so wronged by Swedish inheritance laws that they have set up a website, SupportEva.com, to raise money cover her legal fees in a court challenge.

From the site:

Stieg Larsson had not written a valid will before he died in 2004. So Eva Gabrielsson was left bereft, without any rights in or income from the Millennium series. Instead all the money from the success of the books goes to Stieg Larsson’s brother and father, who also administer the rights. Completely unfair, many Larsson fans feel.

It is our goal with this website simply to support Eva Gabrielsson in a difficult situation. We hope that together we can help her pay the legal bills she has accumulated and assist in enabling her to win the right to administer the Millennium series in the future.

The SMH article goes even further, suggesting that Gabrielsson actually collaborated on the novels with her partner:

Miss Gabrielsson now believes her best chance of laying claim to Larsson’s literary legacy would be by proving she co-authored the books.

Last year, she denied the suggestion, saying she merely proofread the pages. But in a recent interview with a Danish newspaper she said the books were a collaboration.

”We had 32 years to be very consistent ¦ in our language, methods and assessments. It was us,” she said. ”I find it hard to see what was exclusively Stieg and what is me in the language, the content and so on.”