For the uninitiated, Richard Castle is a fictitious crime writer, portrayed on TV by Nathan Fillion in the show Castle. The Nikki Heat books are essentially glorified props from the show, or possibly more cynically well-thought out marketing endeavours to tie in with the show. Whichever way you look at them, they make for excellent reading, especially if like me you’re a fan of the show itself.
Reading these books is very much like reading an episode of the show. The characters from the show are easily identifiable with the characters from the books (Rook = Castle, Heat = Beckett, etc), and no matter how hard I try I simply can’t read these things without imagining the book-based characters as their show-based counterparts. Even some of the situations the titular New York detective finds herself in are taken straight out of the show.
Frozen Heat is the fourth book in the series, and by this point the characters and their quirks are well established. This one is a rollicking read, starting off as a straightforward murder mystery and quickly expanding into a good old spy thriller, with some scenes that hark back to the likes of John Le Carre and Graham Greene. The writing style has settled down into something that is highly readable, and contains just enough humour to stop it descending into dark and dreary. All in all I reaally enjoyed this one, perhaps more so than the previous three.
If you’re a fan of the TV show then I would definitely say give this one a try. Or better yet, start way back at the beginning with Heat Wave.