Day: December 13, 2015

Driving Heat – Richard Castle

51MSLlWQIjL._SX342_BO1,204,203,200_Title – Driving Heat

Author – Richard Castle

Published – 2015

Genre – Crime fiction

This is the seventh in the series of books written by ‘Richard Castle’ – of the eponymous Castle TV series. In fact I’ve reviewed a couple of the earlier titles.

The book is in a similar vein to its predecessors. In a twist on TV series based on books, the fictional Castle writes about Nikki Heat and the Pulitzer prize-winning journalist Jameson Rook. The book opens as Heat is promoted to Captain of the precinct and on her first day in charge the first homicide cases the murder of her own psychologist. Her personal connection leads her to take a hands-on approach to the case which isn’t helped when she discovers that Rook has been hiding a connection to the deceased.

I couldn’t fault the plot – there’s an auto-safety whistle-blower who wants to make public the fatalities being caused by a piece of software which links back to a tycoon. There are sub-plots about protests after a Syrian diplomat’s son is arrested, a vindictive ex-cop and some personal issues for Heat as she gets to grips with her new role and struggles with the implications of her impending marriage to Rook. In the middle of all of this a cyber attack on the force’s systems send everyone ‘back to basics’.

I struggled on two counts. The first was how much exposition there was. I remember the previous books having a faster pace and I really felt I was wading through this one. For a 300-ish page book it took me ages to read. My second issue is how the book almost, but not quite, parallels events in the TV series. In that Castle and Beckett are already married and there are other differences in the backstory etc. For some reason I found it more difficult with this book to separate the two sets of characters and stories

Thanks to the publisher for the review copy.