The fourth book in The Millennial series, which began with The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, (Swedish cover on the left, above, next to the familiar American cover) will be published in August, as originally announced at the end of 2013, confirms the Swedish publisher Norstedts. Titled That Which Does Not Kill, it is written by the Swedish journalist and author David Lagercrantz.
There’s not much information available on the content of the book. As The Guardian comments, “the author remained tight-lipped about the meaning of the title or what direction the action-packed political thriller – 500 pages long in Swedish – will take,” telling the Dagens Nyheter newspaper, simply “What I wanted to make use of in the book was the vast mythology that Stieg Larsson left behind, the world he created.” When the project was first announced, the publisher said it has nothing to do with the manuscript that Larsson left unfinished when he died in 2004 (the series was originally planned as ten books and there is a legal dispute over ownership of the rights to the unfinished manuscript).
There’s no news yet on which company will publish the book in the U.S. and the possible contenders represent a tale of modern publishing consolidation. The previous titles in The Millennial series were published in the U.K. by Quercus and in the U.S. by RH/Knopf. Since then, Quercus opened offices in the U.S., launching in 2013 with a collection of Larsson’s articles, The Expo Files. After financial struggles, the entire company was acquired by Hachette last September and, according to PW, a new publisher of the U.S. division was named just a couple of weeks ago, reporting to the Little, Brown imprint. So, the Swedish publisher may have followed tradition and sold the rights to the Quercus division Hachette in the U.K., followed by RH/Knopf in the U.S., or they may have sold both the U.S. and U.K. rights to Hachette.
Then again, they maybe going with another publisher entirely. There also remains the question of whether a Stieg Larsson book without Stieg Larsson will attract readers.