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Rapture (Bioshock) [Mass Market Paperback]

John Shirley , Ken Levine
4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
RRP: £7.99
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Book Description

19 July 2011 Bioshock
It was the end of World War II. FDR s New Deal had redefined American politics. Taxes were at an all-time high. The bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had created a fear of total annihilation. The rise of secret government agencies and sanctions on business had many watching their backs. America's sense of freedom was diminishing...and many were desperate to take that freedom back. Among them was a great dreamer, an immigrant who pulled himself from the depths of poverty to become one of the wealthiest and most admired men in the world. That man was Andrew Ryan, and he believed that great men and women deserved better. So he set out to create the impossible, a utopia free from government, from censorship, and from moral restrictions on science, where what you gave is what you got. He created Rapture the shining city below the sea. But this utopia suffered a great tragedy. This is the story of how it all came to be...and how it all ended.

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Product details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Titan Books Ltd (19 July 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1848567049
  • ISBN-13: 978-1848567047
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 3.1 x 17.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (81 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 61,762 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


"As a companion to the magnificent world the Bioshock series has built up so far, it's essential." --Square Go

"I was absolutely enraptured by Rapture." --The Sixth Axis

"It's worth taking another trip beneath the surface to see just what happened to the art-deco Atlantis." --Xboxer360

"It offers an enthralling, if sombre, first-hand look at the rise and fall of an undersea utopia. It adeptly deals with the philosophical issues of state control, and the nature of what man is prepared to sacrifice in order to fulfill his dreams, and is a worthy read for any Bioshock fan. --Playstation Future

About the Author

John Shirley is a critically acclaimed cyberpunk, sci-fi and horror writer. He wrote the first screenplay for The Crow. He has also written many tie-ins including Constantine and Doom. His short story collection Black Butterflies was named one of the Publisher's Weekly best books of 1998. Ken Levine is a founding member of and creative director at 2K Boston, formerly known as Irrational Games.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Can't stop reading 10 Sep 2011
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I'm less than 200 pages in, but it's a totally engrossing world that John 'don't call me' Shirley has created. He has created a completely new story within the Bioshock world as a prequel, and is filled with great attention to detail, convincing characters, insight into Raptures history and how it was created, more insight into Frank Fontaine who would go on to be a major player in the original game, and so much more. An involving book, and PROOF that not all videogame books are terribly written. I need to read the whole book for a complete opinion, but honestly this book deserves to be read, even if you haven't played Bioshock before, because the Sci-Fi premise is fascinating.

OK so I finished the book recently, and I'll say that it manages to keep the superb atmosphere throughout the whole novel. Towards the end things are probably sped up a bit too much with a lot of story crammed into the last 50 pages, but other than that, I can't fault this book. On the 2nd readthrough you know the characters and can form a better picture of the early chapters in your mind, and that's what I'm doing now.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Quite enjoyable for fans of the first two games 10 Dec 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I am usually quite skeptical of book tie-ins to computer games, but not everything has to be great literature to be enjoyable. I found Bioshock: Rapture to be a decent companion piece to the first two Bioshock games (personally I have always considered Bioshock 2 to be an under rated gem). If you have any interest in how Rapture was first conceived and built by Andrew Ryan and his associates, give this a go. It is competently written and while I think the author went a bit overboard in weaving in quotes from the game audio logs into the narrative, this does at least create a sense of consistency with the games. Not great, but by no means terrible either, so a solid three stars from me.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Will you kindly buy this book?! 4 Oct 2014
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am a huge fan of the Bioshock games and when I heard about this book, I just had to get it

Rapture is the perfect companion for the first two Bioshock games and is a must for any fan. Via a number of characters, all of whom appear in the games somewhere, it takes the reader from the creation of Rapture to the discovery of ADAM and ends with the civil war erupting. Although this book could easily be read and enjoyed without having played the games, it does contain a number of explanations and nods to events, charcters and occurances that are hinted at in the games, which only a gamer will appreciate.

I found that, when I played despite the darkness of the themes addressed in the game, I still fell in love with the setting and city of Rapture and this book has just fuelled that fondness.

I chose Rapture, and so should you
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
Really enjoyed this book, despite not playing the games all the way to the finish yet, good coverage of the prequel story, well written and has been re-read 3 times.
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4.0 out of 5 stars A nice expansion for the universe 2 Sep 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Good, fast paced story with some very nice character development. Many characters crop up from the audio diaries in the game and the main character, Bill Mcdonaghal is relatable and stands out as one of few good people in Rapture. My only gripes are that many lines the characters speak are straight out of the audio diaries, even when they're not recording themselves. Also Andrew Ryan, while developed and explored very interestingly, occasionally doesn't speak the way you expect him to for such a learned, well spoken man (e.g. using the word `kids`), but they're only nitpicking as the book is fantastic otherwise :)
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8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A great novel tie in. 29 July 2011
By Gareth Wilson - Falcata Times Blog TOP 500 REVIEWER VINE VOICE
Format:Mass Market Paperback
This title is set to attract the attention of gamers who have fallen for the charms of Bethesda's Under Sea cities through the two games out there where Big Daddies and Little Sisters roam the realm in a city of ruins. What this title by John Shirley does is takes the reader back to the time before the games where they get to see some of the prehistory that led to the downfall.

It's well written, the characters vivid and for a game inspired title, it's one that really hits the spot. Add to this some wonderfully clever touches that make sure that it moves at its own pace alongside the tides and all in a very satisfactory read. Other than this, if you're not a fan of the games it may well not hit the spot in quite the same way as established histories and understanding are key to the titles pace as well as flavour for the readers pleasure.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Dive Into The Depths Of Rapture! 14 July 2012
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
I am a MASSIVE fan of 'Bioshock', I am that person who spends hours on the wikia, replaying both games, all the DLC's and listening to audio diaries again and again. I went into this novel with an ice-cold eye, just waiting for Shirley to slip up. My eye quickly thawed. It is simply wonderful, there is the perfect balance for both fans and newbies alike. Characters are introduced quickly and effectively, so fans smile at their arrival and those new to the series get a strong-sense of who this person is. No one was introduced in a trite fashion, nothing felt forced or 'tacked-on', all of the famous quotes were seamless and effective. The research was thorough and only occasionally did dialogue get a little weak, Bill saying 'Da' instead of father, a term I've never heard anyone from London's east-end use and Suchong's broken English sometimes becoming a little absurd. There were a couple of errors; one part that made me wince, was claiming 'Arcadia' was 'built' to produce oxygen, when Julie Langford's audio diaries prove otherwise, that it was her enterprising idea to start selling the oxygen they produce and undercut the market from Fontaine (all prompted by Ryan making a walk through Arcadia a luxury.) This is beyond pedantic though and most people wouldn't even notice. In short Bioshock the novel succeeds, it is wonderful, filling in the blanks on Rapture's murky history and keeping me sucked in from one page to the next!
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Absolutely Fantastic!
A perfect prequel to the first two Bioshock games.
Published 14 days ago by Jordan Pittock
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
loved the game and now loved the book
Published 16 days ago by Jimmy
4.0 out of 5 stars Would you kindly find this review helpful...?
This book is a prequel to the first Bioshock game. It explains how it was built and what went into the planning. Read more
Published 1 month ago by Kellalizard
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Loved it
Published 1 month ago by Mr Darrin D Smith
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Wow, im impressed; the book came within days in such high quality, cheers dude.
Published 1 month ago by Jay
4.0 out of 5 stars Definitely better that the video-game. +++
Definitely better that the video-game. Fundamental for understand the Bioshock Universe.
Published 1 month ago by Monica
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
Published 2 months ago by FFOXSOX
5.0 out of 5 stars If you enjoyed the first two games then this book is a ...
If you enjoyed the first two games then this book is a must, fantastic read, and brilliant story line. It gives the games a new breath of life.
Published 2 months ago by Terry Owen
4.0 out of 5 stars Four Stars
Great read if your into the lore of Bioshock
Published 2 months ago by Michael Hughes
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply awesome for Bioshock lovers
If you love the Bioshock series you really should read this book! <3
It's amazing and it makes you understand Rapture's history better, it makes you feel more close to... Read more
Published 4 months ago by Simona Fani
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