Sunday, December 26, 2010

Heat Wave by Richard Castle

This book is ostensibly written by Richard Castle, a fictional character and main protagonist of the TV show Castle. He's supposed to be a James Patterson, Dean Koontz, Tom Clancy style blockbuster author, with a focus on Mystery Thrillers. Heat Wave is, within the context of the TV show, the novel he writes over the course of the first season, using the show's other main character as inspiration; Kate Beckett, an NYPD detective.

However, this book is really more of a book written by 'some guy' inspired by watching the TV show than by 'Castle' inspired by Beckett. Every character in the book has a direct analogue to the TV show, to the point where the book may as well not have even replaced the names. Within the context of the book, there's a journalist following Nikki Heat around named Jameson Rook... yeah. Heat and Rook have an intense attraction to one another hiding behind a veneer of sarcasm and mild resentment (on her side at least)

So really, it isn't actually a book, it's one episode of the TV show in book form. It's not a terribly good episode either. The plot unfolds so predictably that it's almost painful. The millionaire industrialist is actually broke. His trophy wife is a former stripper. The virtuous accountant is less than virtuous. The crazy Russian giant loses an identifiable ring in a key location because he needed to lose it there to connect the two crime scenes. The only original idea comes near the end, and it's the only salvagable part of the experience.

Overall, it doesn't read like a book written by the character Richard Castle would, it doesn't give fans of the show anything new for these characters to do, and the plot is noticeably less intelligent than plots on the show tend to be. All the humor falls flat as does the romance. The action scenes are okay though, and those are hard to write. Skip this book and watch the TV show, after all, it stars Nathan Fillion. If you watch it all and can't wait to watch more, the book might be worth your time... all 3ish hours it'd take to finish. It's only about 180 pages long.


  1. Yuck! That just sounds like bad fan fiction! I've never heard of three show though, would I like it?

  2. I'm not sure if you'd like it or not. I like it myself and I generally don't care much for mystery stories. I think one of the things that got me into the show at first is that Fillion's character Rick Castle analyzes the crimes they go on based on the story that the murder tells, what makes good drama. He's often wrong in the end, but his method of thinking often leads to asking different questions or looking from a different perspective that leads them in the right direction.

    I really get a kick out of that idea, and it's kept me on since.

    I think the DVDs of the 1st season retail for $29.99, which is outrageous because I think the first season is 10 or 11 episodes. I think you can get the episodes electronically for $1 an episode online somewhere. Otherwise you could Netflix an episode or the first DVD to see if you like it. My favorite episode of the whole series so far was Episode 3, which would probably be on the first disk if you rented it, so if you watch it to that point and don't like it yet, you probably won't.


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