Saturday, 27 August 2016

Review: Raging Heat

Raging Heat Raging Heat by Richard Castle
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

While I still really enjoy the Castle TV series, the books are just getting worse.

This one happens around two years after the last one (Deadly Heat), and with solving the murder of her mother and stopping the terror plot that she uncovered before her death, Nikki Heat seems to have lost it all. She seems caught in a maelstrom of feelings, from missing Rook to not trusting him to almost hating him... Nikki seems to have let go of her self-control (and -respect?) completely, substituting it with rage (as of the book title) and paranoia. I was constantly wondering - if the TV series were real, and Richard Castle had written that book about his love interest Kate Beckett, how much she must have hated him for it. For turning her from a strong, intelligent woman into an emotional wreck. It's definitely not a pleasure to see her - read about her - like that.

The plot itself wasn't too bad, revolving around two illegals who got killed for, well, knowing too much. With a possible involvement of a politician, and impending hurricane Sandy impact (I still like how the books play out in the here-and-now), the investigation goes slowly. Not helping is Nikki Heat herself, who actually, and non-understandably - seems to be on a vendetta against said politician, disregarding other hot leads. Seriously, she's just not herself and I don't blame her colleagues for being angry at her for it.
Nevertheless, they all come together in the end to solve it all. Well done?

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Review: Deadly Heat

Deadly Heat Deadly Heat by Richard Castle
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This is where the series starts to go down, in my opinion. The book is still interesting and entertaining, with two cases to solve - a serial killer who chose Nikki as his final victim, and a terror plot that led to the death of her mother ten-something years before.

Spoiler warning, don't read on if you still haven't read that book.

While I can't say that the plot was very predictable, like others did, I have to say that it felt a bit forced to me. Suddenly, almost all of the people Nikki's mother spied on are involved in the terror plot? And nobody ever wondered why Mrs. Heat was tutoring at all of their homes? Really?
And that serial killer, because he didn't get enough attention from Nikki, had to go and get involved himself? And the people behind the terror plot weren't clever enough to get rid of that one guy? How convenient for Nikki and the plot...
No, this was simply a bit too fantastic/unrealistic for me.

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Monday, 20 June 2016

Review: The Shepherd's Crown

The Shepherd's Crown The Shepherd's Crown by Terry Pratchett
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I'm very undecided about the rating - 3 or 4 stars? As the last book Sir Terry has ever written - for that heartbreak alone - it would probably deserve 4, right? On the other hand, it is very clear while reading the book that he never got to finish polishing it. It is not, quality-wise, a VERY GOOD book. In the end, I went with quality as guide.
Reading The Shepherd's Crown made me very sad, because it was so clear that it wasn't done yet, because of all that is missing (is Tiffany always wearing black now?), because of the deaths, and because there will never be another Discworld book. There were some small sections that made me laugh, too, though. The book is like a minimal, shortened version of a good Discworld novel, and I am glad that Sir Terry got far enough into it that it could be published.
The world is changing...

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