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on 24 January 2012
I have only read a dozen books in my short lifetime and I must say this one is high in the list of my favourite books. It fills in the blanks to the game (if you've played the first one) and still proves to be a fascinating book for those who haven't played the game as the idea of the story is intriguing. The language is easy to follow and the book is written very well as you can follow the story without haven't to think too hard. You get a good sense of knowledge for the characters and their personalities.

Overall, this book is very impressive and I would read it again. Good job Titan! ****
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on 23 February 2014
This is a very good insight into rapture prior to it's meltdown documented via the games. My only criticism would be that there are some parts of "story" in this book that are amazing, well written and great to read, but at the same time do not really add value to the main plot line. . . These parts are nice to have, but leave you wondering what you just learned. Other than this, a great piece of reading which really opens your eyes, and explains a lot about rapture and bioshock we didn't know. Even a mention of comstock (for those that have played infinite)
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on 29 July 2013
Amazingly written book which is a real page turner even in the less action packed sections. It has vivid descriptions of Rapture and offers a lot of information for the world before the game. As somebody that knows the story of Bioshock but has not actually played it, I found that this added a lotof clarification and extra knowledge about the world but you don't really need to know much about the game to read this anyway other than the name of the character that you play as. Brilliant book!
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on 15 November 2013
Well, basically I loved the story-line that the games had, so I decided to look for something... that would broaden a bit more the story, as it was fantastic in-game. My 'fear' when buying the book was if it had anything to do with the game, if it would be well-written, and... hasn't disappointed me a single bit. The author creates a fantastic scenery and describes every bit of the story, from every characters footsteps to their personality. So far, I'm enjoying it!
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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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on 15 November 2011
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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on 21 March 2016
This book was so good that not only did I purchase it for myself, I also purchased it for a friend who was just about to play through the series herself. However, I will recommend to you as I did to her, to please play Bioshock 1 before reading this book to avoid spoilers. This book explains in great detail the stories behind the diaries found throughout Rapture in the first Bioshock game, at times going so far as to quote the diaries themselves in the story line. The picture of Rapture before corruption is painted so beautifully that you pray the ending is different to what you know it will be. Follow the scientists Tenenbaum and Suchong as they discover and produce Adam, build Rapture from the ground up with McDonagh and found an empire with Fontaine. I am not a lover of re-reading books, but since my original purchase of it a few years ago, I have re-visited the pages more times than I can remember.
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on 4 October 2016
I must say that I was really surprised by how good this book was, I was expecting something quickly written to cash in on the success of the games but John Shirley has created something that stands on its own as an excellent book.
This acts as a prequel to the first game and details the rise and fall of Rapture. I found the characters interestingly written and John really must have done his research as he brilliantly brings together the history of rapture that you glean in bits and pieces in the game and has created a fully fleshed out book. The mood set is very dark and brutal and pairs up perfectly with the game.
I really enjoyed this book and would recommend it to Bioshock fans and non-fans alike.
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on 23 June 2014
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 Ryan, Fontaine and other characters you found in the first two games.
I really like Shirley's writing style, it's full of nice details that every Bioshock lover will appreciate.

**One more thing: if you thought McDonagh was a nice guy from the audio diaries you found during the game, you'll surely like him more while reading this book <3
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on 19 February 2012
Really good, well written imaginative book, even more so if your already a fan of the series. Sets the story in motion of how rapture came to be, and the events that led to its demise. You get a good feel for the characters, a lot of which you pick up diaries from within the game, which is a nice touch. You get a good sense of how rapture was in its 'Glory' days, which makes it all the more eerie and interesting to go and explore its ruins. Overall a very good read.
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