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4.2 out of 5 stars
Heat Wave (Nikki Heat)
Format: HardcoverChange
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17 of 21 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Purchased this book this morning and couldn't put it down. I started to thumb through it and just kept reading. Two coffees later I left the bookstore promising myself to stock up on limes, salt and something fun in a bottle.
Wow! Castle has done it again. Heat and Rook are lightning together!!
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on March 13, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
If I wasn't already a fan of the TV series I wouldn't know anything about these characters even after reading part of this book. I say part because I can't bring myself to finish it! This reads like a play rather than a novel. There's absolutely nothing here to inspire knowing these characters, their feelings etc. No emotional anything and strictly two dimensional. I was expecting great things but to state that I'm disappointed is a SEVERE understatement!!!!

Clearly experienced novelists are not the ones writing this series! This is borderline beginning novelists and mediocre at BEST!

I wouldn't waste my time with this book or series! Stick to watching it on TV! If you enjoy reading books with the same characters through a series there are TONS of great ones out there! Don't settle for this!

If I could rate it less than one star - I would! Thank goodness this was free!
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16 of 20 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
As an avid reader and a big fan of the TV show I was looking forward to the books written by "Richard Castle". What a big disappointment. I found myself not liking any of the characters (and I so wanted to because I love the characters of the show)and the story line dragged. Do yourself a favor, stick with the television form of Castle.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on September 10, 2010
Format: PaperbackVerified Purchase
Previously I gave a one-star review - that was before I was into 6 chapters into the book. It does get better the further you get into it but it still lacks the feelings of interaction that are experienced in the show (which I love). The story is a little more complex than initially expected which makes it more enjoyable. I still encourage people to stay with the TV show as you get the real feelings of Castle, Beckett and their cronies. If you want something just to pass time, it'll do but I wouldn't waste my time on making it a priority addition to my library.
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30 of 40 people found the following review helpful
Format: Hardcover
I enjoy ABC's Castle on TV. I have liked Nathan Fillion ever since I first encountered him in the SF series "Firefly", then the movie, "Serenity". I really enjoy his family in the series. I like the character of Kate Beckett. This book, though is horrible. When other reviewers say that they like it, I am totally puzzled. I am at page 102, and wondering if I can go on. It is so poorly written, in such a poor style it is painful to read. It is so bad, that I have to wonder if it was written as a joke of how the crime writer Castle cannot really write at all.

I have read thousands of books in my life. Many, many mysteries and police dramas included. Some were very good, and some not so good. Ed McBain's series of the 87th precinct are an excellent example of a good cop novels, and I recommend them to everyone. This book though, is the biggest stinker that I can remember in quite a while. It is now selling for $8, down from the issue price, which should also tell prospective readers something. IMO, $8 is still way too much. Don't waste your money. Buy something good.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on February 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is hands down the worse book I've ever read, and I've only made it to page 50. Whoever edited this book should be fired, and the author should not quit their day job at the perfume counter at Macy's. What is with the perfume ad references? I want to know what they blackmailed James Patterson with to get him to give a positive review for this book. I do not profess to be a writer, but I do know there are plenty of starving writers who could have done a better job. Spoilers, but I would recommend not reading the book unless you're twisted and enjoy awful books.

There are so many things wrong with this book that it is hard to find a place to start.

Editing:
I have found multiple sentences stating the same thing. I have also found multiple sentences stating the same thing. Yes that was on purpose. There are paragraphs that have been added that do not further the story line.

Characters:
The characters have no dimension. The back and forth banter between the Rook and Heat is unbelievable. The author makes it obvious Heat is attracted to Rook, but you're not sure what she sees in him. Subtle is also not a word the author understands. Heat takes time out to wonder about what her life could have been, which is completely out of character. Did the author ever watch the tv show before writing this book? The victim has every vice you can think of, which makes you question how he became successful in the first place.

Plot:
The author did not do any research. The reader is expected to accept red ink lines pointing down on charts are sufficient detail to describe the downfall of a once successful corporation. I must have missed the fact that the suspect's pet peeve and cologne are more important to the plot than how the victim bankrupted the corporation.

I could go on, but what's the point.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Let me begin by saying that I am a fan of the CASTLE television series. It is a cheeky, and sometimes cheesy bit of fluff that is pure entertainment. The viewer is not supposed to examine the "facts" of each weekly offering too closely nor try to utilize logic. This is just a show where you sit back and enjoy the silly banter of the cast and the sexual tension exuding from the two protagonists as they attempt to solve their latest case.

HEAT WAVE capitalizes on the popularity of the television show and follows the same formula that made the show a success. Unfortunately, what plays well on the small screen does not necessarily translate to the page with the same panache.

While the book does have a couple of amusing exchanges between our two protagonists, I believe if one has never seen the show and has no point of reference, this story of the murdered real-estate tycoon and his trophy wife would have found its way to the "remainders" bin within a month of publication.

My recommendation: If you want to be entertained for an hour, sit back and watch the show, pass on this book and devote your time to more informative and interesting reading material. If you feel compelled to read this offering, save your money and get it at the library.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
on October 12, 2009
Format: Hardcover
I love the show Castle, so I was very excited to pick up this book -- and I wasn't let down. At first I wasn't so sure about the inclusion of the Castle-type character (with the not-so-subtle name of Rook), but eventually the parallel to the show grew on me. The title character Nikki Heat is a strong, independent woman who can really kick some butt, and she made a good protagonist. I loved the "action scenes" in the novel in particular, and thought they were very well-written. Any fan of Castle should definitely pick this up.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
on June 24, 2011
Format: HardcoverVerified Purchase
I only recently got into watching Castle and completely love the show, so I was pleasantly surprised to find that ABC had extended the idea so far as to publish Richard Castle's "Nikki Heat" novels. Naturally, I simply had to have the books. As a Castle fan, I'm thrilled. As an avid and discerning mystery-novel reader? Not so much.

Heat Wave is the first book in Richard Castle's new series, which he has based on his shadowing of NYPD detective Katherine Beckett, his new muse. The books follow the adventures of an NYPD detective - Nikki Heat. She's being shadowed by Pulitzer Prize-winning magazine journalist Jameson Rook who is doing an article based on her squad. The previous three sentences are a lot less confusing if you watch the show!

This first book begins with the premise that Heat and Rook already know each other, so we don't get to see the true first meeting of the principal characters. From there, the story moves to the case, and the other main characters begin to make their appearance. As fascinated as I was with the very concept of the book, I in fact began to have minor issues with it from the very first page.

By about twenty pages in, we've met all the main characters; Nikki Heat, Jameson Rook, medical examiner Lauren Parry, and Heat's team of supporting detectives, Raley and Ochoa - together affectionately termed `Roach'. However, I cannot "see" any of these characters in my mind at all. There are no real descriptions of them - nothing for me to form a mental picture of the people I'm reading about. I'm therefore left to conclude that I'm meant to see the actual characters from the show in their thinly veiled counterparts on paper.

I do understand that Heat Wave was written to take advantage of the show's popularity and as an obvious tie-in as well. Granted, that's clearly what the book truly is, but the potential was there to make it something much more amazing. The entire premise could have been better treated. It could have been something fantastic on its own and still achieved the result of an exciting tie-in to Castle.

Richard Castle is supposed to be a best-selling author with a string of extremely successful books under his belt already. Heat Wave should reflect that. Unfortunately, it comes off in some parts as though it might be his first book - great premise, interesting story, but somehow lacking in some parts and needing some polish. I can't help thinking that Rick Castle, who is good friends with the likes of such mystery greats as Cannell, Patterson and Connelly, wouldn't consider this a book worthy of that caliber. Additionally, I can't suspend belief enough to accept that Rick Castle would lay bare his `real' life on the page, especially after he maintains to Beckett that Nikki Heat is merely based on her.

I may have bought the book because of Castle (and because Nathan Fillion is on the back cover!) but that does not preclude me wanting a well-written, captivating story - the same as I would require from any book I choose to buy.

What's even worse, as far as I'm concerned, is that Heat Wave absolutely had the potential to become that amazing book. I kept catching glimpses of what it might have been. It essentially made the reading of it more frustrating, because it would have been easier to dismiss the book out of hand as a simple marketing ploy, if there was no merit to it at all. Instead, there was so much untapped possibility that I was doubly disappointed when none of it manifested.

While all of the above may seem to indicate that I did not enjoy the book, it truly isn't the case at all. There was definitely much to love about Heat Wave. There is a solid mystery, with interesting suspects and a believable plot. The victims and suspects were better drawn than the main characters and comfortably stereotypical instead of mind-numbingly so. Also, although I figured out "whodunit" before the end of the book, there were sufficient red herrings as to not make it too simplistic.

Naturally, the best parts of the book are the references to Castle, inclusive of actual lines from the show and the engaging banter between Heat and Rook. Additionally, the sexual tension between Heat and Rook was also well handled, despite feeling a little rushed, and it gave another view of the matching tension between Beckett and Castle on the show. I particularly loved Rick Castle's author's note at the end, which carried through the entire concept of the book having truly been written by the fictional character. The blurbs on the cover from James Patterson and Stephen J. Cannell were also a wonderful touch.

Heat Wave is a wonderful concept that might have been better executed. I'll continue to buy the other books in the series, because on one level - that of the clever tie-in to a show I love - it works incredibly well. At the same time, I'm also looking forward to some improvement in the overall writing style and general caliber of the story.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Format: Paperback
Book 1 in the Nikki Heat series

When I learned there was a novel on the market by Richard Castle, one of my favourite TV characters/ program, curiosity got the best of me. It appears this is creative engineering, a marketing ploy, an ingenious coup to make us believe the TV character Richard Castle is also a published writer. Who the author really is, is another mystery, judging by the writing style, my guess is that Castle's poker buddies (well-known writers) who make guest appearances in some TV episodes have a strong influence behind the hit series.

The novel is entertaining and fun to read. The plotting is basic, creating a run of the mill crime story with some twists here and there. The narration is simple, short and sweet and the dialogue is similar to the characters on the TV show. The book's main characters have different names, Jameson Rook (Richard Castle), is the fictional award winning writer/reporter suffering from a dry period. With the help of his political connections, he is given the opportunity to shadow Nikki Heat (Kate Beckett) and her team of NYPD detectives, hoping to gain ideas for a new book. Nikki is far more aggressive in her relationships and deals with the continual presence of Rook in a different manner than her TV counterpart Kate but the other characters play similar roles, the exception is Alexis, Castle's daughter, who has yet to make an appearance.

As you can see, while reading this novel, I found it hard not to make comparisons with the TV program, it was easier to visualize the characters, and they really came alive in my mind.

The story "Heat Wave" is based around the investigation into the murder of real estate magnate, Matthew Starr, whose body was found at the base of his penthouse apartment. Detective Heat and her shadow (Rook) are assigned the case and as in the TV show, he constantly second guesses her observations adding humour by teasing her along the way..

Readers should get a kick out of this novel, I did. It may not measure up to best but after watching and enjoying the TV show it is hard not to like.
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