Fans of the hit ABC series Castle know that Nathan Fillion’s character, Richard Castle, doesn’t just follow Detective Kate Beckett around because she is so pretty. He follows her around to get material for the series of books her writes. And his latest is available in book stores now….

Frozen Heat is the fourth in this entertaining series and it seems Richard Castle continues to be inspired by the woman in his life.

A brief confession – before I was sent this book to review, I had yet to actually read any of the Nikki Heat books. I thought the concept was very clever. Both from a creative stand point as well as a marketing stand point for ABC. (Well played, executives!), I just hadn’t had a chance to read them yet. So I ran to the library, grabbed the first three off the shelves and went to town.

I loved them, but there is this sort of oddness that comes with reading a book by a fictional character – you feel a different sort of connection. The characters in the book, Jameson Rook, Nikki Heat, Detectives Raley and Ochoa, Medical Examiner Lauren Parry – they all represent characters on the show. (Fun fact – it took me half way through book one before I caught on to the Rook/Castle name connection. From a chessboard. Sigh.) Because this book is written by the character Castle, it is hard not to see the very strong personality connections between Rook/Castle, Heat/Beckett, Raley/Ryan, Ochoa/Esposito and Parry/Parish. I felt a stronger immediate connection not just to the characters but to the reason the author wrote them that way. He is a person I know better than almost any other author I’ve ready because we are invited weekly into the most intimate moments of his life.

Then it leads you on this other path – in book one, Heat and Rook get together. For those watching the show, you know that didn’t actually happen to those characters for awhile. So I go back and look at the characters on the show and think about how that really changed their dynamic in a new way. As a writer, I’m jealous. The whole thing is very clever. I was honestly quite shocked at how it really swayed my feelings for the book and the show.

As for this book in particular, I loved it. The noir style in writing is fun to read, and again, feels right coming from Richard Castle, who we know loves the genre. The story is funny, intense, sexy, and romantic. And for those of you who are looking for the connection to the show – it rings loud and clear as this book focuses on the death of Nikki Heat’s mother ten years ago.

The arrival of a Jane Doe found murdered in the same way as Nikki’s mom, and with more than one connection to that cold case, sends Nikki and Rook on an exciting and dangerous journey to discover the truth. Much like the series, it is filled with twists and turns.

If you like a few extra *wink wink* moments in your meta noir mystery novels, then you’ll love the inclusion of certain moments, such as Rook asking for a bulletproof vest that says “WRITER” on the front. Or the inclusion of two detectives on the case from Burglary whose names are Detectives Malcolm and Reynolds. As is Malcolm Reynolds. As in the character that Nathan Fillion played on Firefly. My Browncoat heart soared in delight.

I admit – I love the show more than the book. But, let’s face it, Nathan Fillion is on the show, and I love him more than almost anything else, soooo….

I highly recommend picking up this book. It is a fun, easy, quick read that just helps you enjoy the show even more. It is available in hardcover and as an e-book through Amazon and Barnes & Noble  or wherever you choose to  buy your books!

You can also try to win your very own copy right here at Small Screen Scoop!

Find Melissa on Twitter @serrae

Book and photo courtesy of Hyperion.