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What’s the Story?

Nikki Heat investigates the murder of a high-profile real-estate tycoon with the help of annoying reporter Jameson Rook.


What’s the Real Story?

It’s totally an episode of Castle. Replace “Heat” with “Beckett” and “Rook” with “Castle” and you’re pretty much done.

This is the book Castle was writing in the first season, the first in his Nikki Heat series. Yes, someone wrote an real book based on a book written by a fictional character within a TV series.

So who actually wrote the book? I have no idea. The book’s front and back covers and acknowledgements all list “Richard Castle” as the author, and nowhere online have I found mention of anyone other than Richard Castle writing it.

Beckett, a fictional character, reads the real book Heat Wave as fictional (or real?) author Richard Castle looks on.


What’s the Problem?


My biggest gripe with this book is that Jameson Rook is in it. It seems a bit too close to home for Richard Castle to write himself into his book. He could get away with Detectives Ryan – I mean Raley – and Esposito – I mean Oacha – but putting an investigative reporter who is doing a story in there (rather than, as in the series, a writer who is doing research on her for a book) as well stretches believability a bit.

But that’s only from an “if you think of it from Castle’s perspective” angle. This book is, really, an extended episode of Castle where you get a bit more behind-the-scenes detective thinking than you do in the show (which is good) and with the fun Beckett-doesn’t-want-Castle-around feeling that the show started with. And since it is an extended episode of Castle, you need to have all the Castle regular characters, just rebranded with new names.

So… uh… I guess that’s not really a problem, then.

The Writing

Castle is supposed to be a best-selling author, but the writing here reads more like trashy read-it-then-forget-it than something that’s going to win any prizes. But then, “bestseller” doesn’t always mean “best writer ever”, but it’s easy to read (if a little over-telling on occasion). It’s, again, like the show: not breaking new ground and forging amazing new paths of brilliant storytelling, but it’s well put-together. Popcorn entertainment done well.


What’s the Solution?

There really isn’t one. If you like Castle and can read, you should like this book. It’s not winning any prizes for Best Book Ever, but it’s… well… like the show: it probably won’t become your favourite, but it’s entertaining and fun. Time well spent. And it’s the sort of thing I can see Castle writing.


Worth Reading?

Oops; already covered this. Yes, if you like Castle.


  1. The detective on the show is Ryan, not Riley. Just sayin’…

  2. Cheers. Fixed now.

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