Tuesday, July 5, 2011

The Book Addict Reviews: Heat Wave by Richard Castle

Genre: Fiction, Police Procedural, Women Sleuths, Mystery & Thrillers
Series: Nikki Heat, Bk. 1
Order Online: Amazon.com

Author Info: Website
Rating: 1 star
Borrowed book from library.

In A Nutshell:
I was disappointed.  I really love the television show, but I really did not like this book.  I felt the characters lost a lot of the charm and finesse we see in the television show.  They were flat.  The storyline was fairly predictable.

A spin-off of the popular ABC television show Castle, Heat Wave tells the story of a New York real estate tycoon who is murdered when he is thrown off the balcony of his penthouse apartment.  During the investigation, Detective Nikki Heat has to take magazine reporter Jamieson Rook as a ride-along buddy.  As the case unfolds, Heat and Rook not only have to untangle the twisted web of lies that led to the murder but also have to untangle the attraction that seems to be building between the two of them. 

As a fan of the television show, I was hoping for more of the wit and humor that draws me to the show.  I could see attempts to bring that wit and humor to the book, but the book fell flat for me.  The book utilizes some elements from the television show (for instance, Rook is taken as a hostage in a manner similar to when Castle is taken as a hostage in the pilot), but they seem forced together and contrived.  The trouble could be that in the show the elements are part of many different cases whereas in the book they are all part of one case.  So it seems like too many for one story. 

The mystery was nothing special.  I had a pretty good idea of who did it early in the book, and I do not read a lot of mysteries.  I think a big mystery fan would figure it out really early and be very disappointed. 

The book characters do not live up to their counterparts in the television show.  Where I find Richard Castle from the television show intelligent with enough screwball-ness to be funny; I find Jamison Rook to be cocky and annoying.  I thought about this difference a lot because I know that these two characters shared many things, including experiences and reactions to those experiences.  So why do they come off so differently for me?  I think one reason is that the book is missing a character to fill the role of Richard Castle’s daughter, Alexis Castle.  Castle’s relationship with his daughter does a lot to balance his character.  Castle can be a know-it-all and braggart, but he can also be a caring and compassionate parent and friend.  Jamison Rook has no way to show this other side to him, so he just comes off as annoying. 

I am torn as to whether I will read the next book in the series.  Part of me wants to with the hope that it will get better and bring more of the charm of the television show to the page because I miss the show when it is in production.  However, another part of me does not see that happening with how flat this book portrayed the characters, and I would hate to waste more of my time on a book that I feel so blah about in the end.

I recommend skipping this book and instead watching the television show. 

1 comment:

  1. The book will probably be greatly appreciated by watchers of the television series. I've only seen promotional ads for the show and I caught some cross referencing or similarities to it. Actually, the book interested me enough to watch Castle next week and read any more books Richard Castle writes!

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