by Richard Castle
First sentence: “It was always the same for her when she arrived to meet the body.”
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“Oh, Melissa,” you say. “We know that you are really eclectic in your reading. But, a book written by the main character of a TV show. Really? Isn’t that a bit meta for your tastes?”
Yes. Yes, it is. And yet, it sat out there in cyberspace, it’s sultry cover calling to me, piquing my interest. Eventually, I had to cave in.
“Yes, but it can’t have been a good book. It’s written by a fictional person!”
Well, it wasn’t fine literature, that’s true. And I’m not sure it wasn’t even a good mystery, since I called it about halfway through. It did feel pretty pedestrian as far as books go. But, it was fun, and that’s all I was expecting. I’m guessing the screenwriters wrote it, by the way.
“What makes you say that? Nathan Fillion’s headshot’s on the back cover… they went pretty far keeping the illusion that Richard Castle ‘wrote’ the book.”
I know! And that’s one of the things I liked (besides Nathan Fillion’s headshot on the back cover). It really was an in-joke kind of things for fans of the series. Scenes in the book that were lifted straight from episodes; in many ways it was a mash-up of Castle, season one. Aside from Nikki Heat thoroughly beating up a bad guy while buck naked, of course. (Though honestly, I wouldn’t mind seeing Stana Katic pull that off…)
“So, if it’s just a bunch of scenes from episodes thrown together by the screenwriters, is there even a plot?”
Yes, it does have a plot. Nikki Heat is a NYPD detective and the latest murder is millionaire developer Matthew Starr. Jameson Rook is a celebrity journalist following Nikki around to get background for an article he’s writing. As they investigate Starr’s murder, things unravel about his background, his wife, and his business, centering in on the $60 million art collection in his house. Of course, lives are put on the line, banter is had, and sparks fly. It’s not as fun as the show, and I got annoyed with a few things — like calling Detectives Raley and Ochoa “Roach” — but mostly, it’s was just fluffy fun.
“Even if it is fun, why should we, who don’t really watch Castle or follow Nathan Fillion obsessively on Twitter, read it?”
My response: Why aren’t you? It’s quite fun as TV goes. Great writing, pretty good stories, it’s some serious fun. Seriously, though, if you’re not a fan of the show, I really don’t know why you’d pick up the book. Unless you really, really like mysteries and will read just about anything. But, if you’re a fan (or even if you only just watch the show), it’s a quick, fun, fluffy read.
“*sigh* That means you’re going to read the sequel, doesn’t it?”
Yep. It does.