Raging Heat is Richard Castle's sixth Nikki Heat book.
The NYPD's best homicide detective, Nikki Heat, is called upon to investigate the odd death of a man who fell from the sky through the glass ceiling of a planetarium. With more and more clues pointing towards powerful, wealthy, up-and-coming politician Keith Gilbert, Heat is pressured to tread lightly or risk a chance at a lucrative promotion to an international terrorism task force. Compounding her issues is the presence of her boyfriend, world-renowned journalist Jameson Rook, who not only seems to be undermining Nikki's investigation and dividing her squad, but who also intends to propose marriage. With a hurricane bearing down on New York along with the NYPD top brass and a band of ruthless assassins seeking to silence her, Nikki follows the case from the posh neighborhoods of The Hamptons to decrepit warehouses where illegal immigrants are forced to work in slavery. The only thing she knows for sure is that, despite all obstacles, justice must prevail.
- Author: Richard Castle
- Hardcover: 304 pages
- Publisher: Kingswell (ABC)
- Release Date: September 16, 2014
- Language: English
- ISBN: 978-1-4847-2034-9
- Nikki Heat - a tough and intelligent Homicide Detective who drove her career towards the NYPD in order to find her mother's killer. She is modeled after Kate Beckett.
- Jameson Rook - Heat's boyfriend and a world-renowned journalist with First Press magazine who met Nikki when he was assigned to shadow the 20th precinct for an assignment on NYPD Detectives. He is modeled after Richard Castle.
- Detective Miguel Ochoa - a member of the 20th precinct's Homicide Division working with Nikki. He is modeled after Javier Esposito.
- Detective Sean Raley - a member of the 20th precinct's Homicide Division and Detective Ochoa's partner. He is modeled after Kevin Ryan. He is known as the King of All Media Surveillance for his talent at noticing case-breaking details in hours of boring surveillance video.
- Lauren Parry - a Medical Examiner and Nikki's best friend who maintains a warm outlook despite her chosen profession. She is modeled after Lanie Parish.
- Detective Randall Feller: The newest member of Nikki's squad, who transferred from the Taxi Unit.
- Detective Dan Rhymer: A Burglary cop whose nickname is "Opie" because of his Southern accent.
- Zack "The Hammer" Hamner: An arrogant special assistant to the NYPD deputy commissioner for legal affairs.
- Keith Gilbert: A wealthy, politically connected Port Authority commissioner with ambitions to run for the U.S. Senate
- Detective Inez Aguinaldo: A smart Detective Sergeant with the Southampton Village Police Department.
- Captain Wally Irons: The press-hungry, largely incompetent Captain of Nikki's precinct.
- Zarek Braun: A lethal ex-Special Forces assassin, who Nikki and her colleagues nickname the "Cool Customer".
References to Castle Episodes, Cast, and Crew
- As Nikki Heat approaches the crime scene at the planetarium, she sees a coach bus with Edmonton license plates. Nathan Fillion, who plays Richard Castle, is originally from Edmonton, Alberta, Canada.
- In talking to Lauren Parry at the planetarium crime scene, she says she recently worked a case where someone committed suicide "in the Bronx at the Castle Hill Houses." Castle is a reference to Richard Castle and the TV show Castle.
- In describing the history between Rook and Heat, the book says "Heat went from trying to get him [Rook] reassigned because his pigtail-pulling wisecracks annoyed her..." In Sucker Punch, Beckett tells Castle that she's "gotten used to you pulling my pigtails." It also says that after his article about Nikki and her colleagues was published, Nikki kept him around to work cases with her and her team, just like Beckett kept Castle on as an NYPD consultant.
- At one point Nikki admonishes he team not to joke around at the planetarium crime scene too much or they'll find themselves embarrassed "on the cover of this afternoon's Ledger. " The New York Ledger is a newspaper frequently mentioned in Castle.
- Ochoa admits to having been "Airborne" when he previously served in the military. Jon Huertas is also former Air Force.
- The victim who falls through the planetarium roof is reminiscent of the victim wearing the Santa suit who fell from the sky in Secret Santa.
- In chapter one, Rook is comparing himself to various G.I. Joe figures, and eventually settles on a figure whose code name is "Firefly." He admits to Nikki "I sort of feel a connection to him. Can't explain it." Firefly was the TV-series Nathan Fillion starred in and for which he gained a cult following.
- At one point, Nikki finds a Comic-Con baseball cap of Rook's accidentally thrown in a garbage can. Nathan Fillion frequently attends Comic Cons.
- Detective Ochoa, teasing Rook about his crazy theories of what happened to victims, suggests the victim was "a Close Encounters castaway," a reference to Close Encounters of the Murderous Kind.
- In this book, Nikki is up for a promotion that would require frequent worldwide travel, taking her away from Rook, but she hides the fact from him, just like at the end of season 5 when Beckett interviews for a job in Washington, DC without telling Castle.
- Port Authority Commissioner Keith Gilbert is modeled after Senator William Bracken.
- Rook tells Nikki that he keeps having a dream where Nikki is a Senator and wonders where it's coming from. In Time Will Tell, Beckett and Castle's prime murder suspect claims to be from the future where Beckett is a U.S. Senator.
- Nikki Heat and Hamptons Detective Inez Aguinaldo search an area of the Hamptons called Beckett's Neck.
- The murder investigation leads Heat and her team to uncover an identity theft ring, where immigrants brought to the country would take stolen documents found from dumpsters and cull them for social security numbers, birthdates, addresses or anything personal information. This is similar to what Beckett discovers (in In the Belly of the Beast) Bracken has been doing to fund his political career: forcing illegal immigrants to launder money. Nikki also discovers that, when necessary, the immigrants have to piece together shredded documents, much like what Beckett, Castle, Ryan, and Esposito had to do when they recovered the files Montgomery had mailed to Mr. Smith in After the Storm.
- At one point, while investigating in the Hamptons, Nikki interviews a best-selling murder mystery writer who says he's headed to a meet with "Connelly, Nesbo, and Lehane." She also discovers that he drunkenly keyed the car of his editor once.
- Wally Irons is killed when he leads a SWAT team raid on the home of a suspect and steps on a plate wired to trigger an explosion if he moves. Beckett finds herself in the same situation in Still when she accidentally steps on a pressure-sensitive bomb.
- After having a fight with Rook, Nikki meets him at a playground on the swings where both sit facing opposite directions and he surprises Nikki by not breaking up with her, but by giving her key evidence. Beckett and Castle did the same in Watershed, and instead of breaking off their relationship, Castle proposes.
- Rook has a bullet-proof vest with "Journalist" printed on it, like Castle's "Writer" vest.
- Rook almost drowns when the car he and Nikki are riding in is pushed into a below-ground parking garage that has filled with water because of a storm surge. His seatbelt gets jammed and Nikki has to duck underwater and shoot it off to save him. In Linchpin, it is Beckett whose seatbelt jams and Castle who finds her gun and shoots it off to prevent both of them from drowning after their car is pushed off a dock into the Hudson River.
- To get a search warrant, the cops call Judge Simpson, a friend of Castle's. He is based on Judge Markway, who appears in season 1 and who is played by the same actor who voices Homer Simpson on "The Simpsons", Dan Castellaneta.
- Zarek Braun is likely based on Cole Maddox (After the Storm, Always), the ruthless assassin, hired by Senator Bracken to kill Beckett and many others.
- Just as with Beckett's mother's murder, Nikki's victims were murdered because they were trying to do good for others, but got involved in a conspiracy from which they could not escape.