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BOOK REVIEW: FTN reviews Deadly Heat by Richard Castle

September 30th, 2013 by Irwin Fletcher Comments

Deadly Heat
Written by: Richard Castle
Publishedby: Titan Books

Top NYPD Homicide Detective Nikki Heat and her partner, journalist Jameson Rook, pursue the elusive former CIA station chief who ordered the execution of her mother over a decade ago. But their quest for the old spy unearths an alarming terror plot that has already entered its countdown phase. Complicating their mission, a serial killer boldly names his next victim: Detective Heat.

Detective Nikki Heat, from the Twentieth Precinct in New York’s Homicide Division, has spent her young life pursuing the killer of her mother. It was this traumatic experience that first made her want to be a Policewoman, it was the drive to make her want to be a Detective and it has been her career high point to join the Homicide Division.

It has been ten long years but she has finally put the pieces together and got a name. The name of her mother’s killer. She has also worked out that her mother was killed under orders and assassinated by a CIA Station Chief. Having spent ten years hunting down her quarry, Nikki Heat is about to become prey herself.

With a serial killer stalking the streets of New York, Nikki Heat receives the news that no-one wants to receive: Nikki Heat will be the next victim. With her life and that of her lover/companion writer Jameson Rook literally tailing her everywhere she goes, will Nikki dodge the bullet that claimed her mother’s life? And will she finally catch the killer? Can she also stop the serial killer before they claim another victim?

Deadly Heat is the fifth novel in the Nikki Heat Series by Jameson Rook. For those unfamiliar with this novel series, the books expand on the long running television show Castle, in which the character Richard Castle is in a love/hate/fight/make-up and love relationship with the character Det. Kate Beckett.

The books flow like the television series, with humour and slapstick comedy virtually jumping from the pages. As this is the fifth book in the series, there is little devoted to establishing the characters, which thankfully frees up more pages to be devoted to the gripping storylines.

Fans of the show will literally chew up every page as you are once again swept in the world of murder, though sadly the deadly plot elements mean that the romance side of the story has been sacrificed. For those that haven’t read any of the previous novels, I would recommend reading Frozen Heat (Book 4), as this is a direct continuation of that story.

The plot is split between a mysterious serial killer and the CIA operative who assassinated Nikki’s mother. Both elements are fully explored in the novel and Richard Castle’s narration really throws you into the gritty streets of New York. With numerous twists, turns and false trails, the narrative just keeps sucking you in and virtually forcing you to turn that next page to reach the nail-biting conclusion.

Yes some of the plot points may be hinted at well in advance but this is like visiting an old friend you haven’t seen in a while. You forget all the negative points and just enjoy it for the laughs and smiles (oh and there are – surprise, surprise –  even more references to Firefly). I will admit that I am a fan of the show, and it’s virtually impossible to read this (or any of the previous novels) without thinking about their television counter-parts, but to me that just makes this series all the more fun to read.

4 out of 5 Nerds


I'm an LA journalist who really lives for his profession. I have also published work as Jane Doe in various mags and newspapers across the globe. I normally write articles that can cause trouble but now I write for FTN because Nerds are never angry, so I feel safe.