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Dead Space: Martyr (Dead Space Series) Mass Market Paperback – April 26, 2011

4.5 out of 5 stars 157 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

B.K. Evenson has also published the Aliens franchise novel Aliens: No Exit and the Halo short story "Pariah" in Halo: Evolutions. As Brian Evenson, he is the author of Last Days and The Open Curtain. He has been a finalist for an Edgar Award, a Spinetingler Award and a Shirley Jackson Award, and received and IHG Award. Last Days was chosen by the American Library Association as Best Horror Novel of 2009.

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Product Details

  • Series: Dead Space Series (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Tor Books; Reprint edition (April 26, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0765364301
  • ISBN-13: 978-0765364302
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 1.1 x 7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (157 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #728,240 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Dead Space: Martyr is a much-needed good omen for the future of the video game novel. A lot of other video game developers would do well to learn from Visceral Studio's careful, loving treatment of their Dead Space IP. Visceral has expanded their hit 2008 horror game into several comic books and an animated film. They seem to recognize that fans have a hunger for the universe and story they have created. And they love that universe and story enough to want to make the cross-media expansions of the Dead Space IP worthwhile endeavors.

This horror novel is Exhibit A of Visceral's careful management of their IP. They hired someone who could actually write, not some hack who spits out something that reads like a video game walkthrough with slightly better vocabulary. Hiring Brian Evenson was a terrific choice. Video game developers take note: when you want to cash in on a novel that your fans will buy, at least take a second to find somebody like this guy, who can actually write.

Martyr is a prequel to the original Dead Space, set hundreds of years before that game. The novel covers the discovery of the original Marker and ultimately gestures towards the beginnings of the Church of Unitology. Michael Altman may not turn out to be quite who you'd expect him to be, given the reverent way you hear his name used in the games and comics, but that's part of what makes this read so much fun. Evenson doesn't deliver some punched-up version of the text logs you read in Dead Space. He's made a unique and interesting story that doesn't insult your intelligence and will surprise you along the way even if you know where it has to end up.

This is a skillfully crafted narrative that is full of paranoid, horrific, violent and gut-wrenching moments. If you're a huge fan of the video game, you'll be reading this to fill in the back-story. You'll be pleasantly surprised to find that it's actually an absorbing read in its own right.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The world of Dead Space is one filled with disturbing mystery. To be honest, it is fascinating. However, when playing through any of the Dead Space games, it is easy to get confused about the Markers, the Church of Unitology, and all the government conspiracy. I know I did, which made me all the more glad after I read through 'Dead Space: Martyr'. A lot of gaps were filled, and any reader interested in Dead Space will be satisfied after learning about the events that started the rich lore we have come to know and love in the video games.

The author, Brian Evenson, is no stranger to horror fiction. Looking at his novels and short stories easily reveal that. As a result, his perturbing style of writing blends well with the macabre universe of Dead Space. After playing through both DS1 and DS2 numerous times, I can honestly say that Evenson takes the gory imagery in the games and perfectly blends them into writing. On top of the gore, Evenson captures the psychological elements that can't be missed when dealing with the Marker. I often found myself nervously thinking about where my mind would go in certain situations of the book, sometimes hours after reading a few chapters. Overall, the writing is fast-paced and very easy to read. However, it retains the feel of a horror novel in that you get that dreadful sense of a downward spiral all the way through, that disconcerting calm before the terrifyingly violent storm you know will inevitably come.

The story follows Michael Altman, the very ironic 'founder' of Unitology (does, "Altman be praised," sound familiar?).
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Format: Paperback
I just finished reading Dead Space Martyr. Absolutely amazing book, both as a tie in to the story of Dead Space but also as a stand alone scifi horror book. I beat Dead Space (the game) about 3 months ago, watched the animated movie, and then found myself craving more. I read it in three days, and I'm craving more. I've never read a comic, but looks like now I'll have to jump into those to get more of the story while I wait for Dead Space 2 to release on my birthday, January 25th. Happy birthday eh?

But again awesome book, I love how it does the game justice and then some. The best book I have ever read that tied into a video game universe.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I've only recently hopped on the DEAD SPACE bandwagon, and considering the rich and intriguing sci-fi universe Visceral Games have constructed around the franchise, I was actually fiercely hoping that EA had commissioned a novel tie-in at some point in the three years since the release of the first DEAD SPACE. Needless to say, I was very excited to see DEAD SPACE: MARTYR available. Wasn't aware of the author at the time, but I was still willing to give it a go, just to see the direction the story would take. Would it be a mindless gorefest, or would it touch on the greater sci-fi themes the games exuded so well? Turns out, MARTYR does some of both, but mostly the latter, which I really liked.

DEAD SPACE: MARTYR isn't a prequel per se, since it beings around two hundred years before Isaac Clarke and the Aegis VII Incident. But it does tell a story that pretty much acts as a foundation for both games: the origin of the Church of Unitology, and how Michael Altman became the face of it all.

It begins with the discovery of the mysterious Black Marker on Earth, buried deep beneath the Chicxulub impact crater in Mexico (created by the meteor that wiped out the dinosaurs), and continues with conspiracy theory after conspiracy theory. If you've played DEAD SPACE, you'll know that neither games are all that keen on giving up their secrets, and the book is no different. Some of the answers you might be looking for will probably only be hinted at, though the book does a lot to nudge you in the right direction. What's "Convergence"? Why are people "haunted" when they're near a Marker? What's the overall connection between the Marker and the necromorphs?
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