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The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

The book: The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson (No. 1 in the Millennium Trilogy)

The hook: Just as dark and chilling as the icy Swedish setting it takes place in, this thriller follows a disgraced journalist who sets out to solve a decades-old case of a missing girl alongside an unconventially badass computer hacker.

Fear factor: The graphic rape scenes, violence against women, and ominous villains are enough to turn your stomach. But as disturbing as it is, you really can't put it down.