by Richard Castle
Genre: Murder Mystery, Romance, Adult
Pages: 198 pages
Summary: A New York real estate tycoon plunges to his death on a Manhattan sidewalk. A trophy wife with a past survives a narrow escape from a brazen attack. Mobsters and moguls with no shortage of reasons to kill trot out their alibis. And then, in the suffocating grip of a record heat wave, comes another shocking murder and a sharp turn in a tense journey into the dirty little secrets of the wealthy. Secrets that prove to be fatal. Secrets that lay hidden in the dark until one NYPD detective shines a light.
BARON REVIEW: Now this book is interesting because it’s basically a prop in the awesome TV show Castle where a writer shadows a homicide detective around for inspiration. Rick Castle is funny, witty and a refreshingly positive comic relief amidst all the gruesome murder mysteries that the show covers. Now while this novel is a cute accompaniment to the television series, it’s not really much more than that. As a stand alone murder mystery, it’s kind of bland. Certainly not the master piece it’s claimed to be on the show.
The characters sometimes seem forced. And a little bit too much like the characters in the show. I mean I know Richard Castle is following Kate Beckett to write this novel- but for it to mirror the show so exactly is on some ways kind of cheap. Actually… it’s pretty cheap. It reads like Castle’s wannabe diary. Nikki Heat is horny… a lot. She’s horny like a guy. I mean it’s fine for a girl to show some sexual independence. But Nikki was horny right after watching a Pixar movie. I mean… come on. Hold it in your pants for awhile. Geez.
I realize she was using sex as a way to forget about her mother’s death. Which I guess is a little interesting. A little insight into her character. But at the same time, it just made her seem really shallow. I swear she was one step away from getting turned on at a crime scene. Oh… I take it back. She does get turned on at a crime scene. Right in the first chapter. Only you don’t realize it’s going to keep happening for the rest of the book too.
I suppose with a name like Nikki Heat it’s to be expected.
It’s alright for her to have these negative traits if you make up for it with her good ones. It’s what makes dark heros and anti-heros readable. Which the author kind of does. For a chapter or two. But because the sex thing comes up so often throughout the book, her good traits keep getting washed away.
It even gets to a point where Nikki is almost raped by a terrifying thug. And then the next chapter, Nikki has sex with Rook. If you’re paying attention, you’ll noticed that only a day has gone by. I mean… waaaaah? Really Nikki? We were almost raped not 24 hours ago. And now you’re going to have sex with Rook?
And her name. Ugh. It’s distracting. Granted that not the “real” author’s fault. It was part of the television show. He had to work with it. Same with the sex scene, there had to be a sex scene in the book somewhere between Nikki and Rook (the hot-shot journalist) that’s all part of the television series. But there were probably better ways to go about it.
Now this novel is well written. Despite how short it is, it reads very well. Beautiful descriptions. Nikki Heat is a nicely balanced character. The only problem is that the other characters are pretty much card board cut outs- stuck in the book to support Nikki. The villains were okay. They were believable at the very least. And the murder mystery was decent enough, even though a lot of info was withheld.
A better way to handle this book is if the whole book had been written from Rook’s perspective. Then Nikki could have seemed even more sexy and mysterious and we wouldn’t have had to endure all the awkward information withholdings halfway in. Unfortunately for the rape scene to work, the book had to be placed in Nikki’s perspective at some point. I agree. But still… there might have been a better way to handle this book.
Quality: ★★★ 3 out of 5
Enjoyment: ★★★★ 4 out of 5
Rereadable: I believe so. If I get around to it.
Purchase: Probably a better e-book purchase.
Overall: ☺ Good book