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Mass Effect: Revelation (Mass Effect #1)

3.67  ·  Rating Details  ·  7,694 Ratings  ·  497 Reviews
Every advanced society in the galaxy relies on the technology of the Protheans, an ancient species that vanished fifty thousand years ago. After discovering a cache of Prothean technology on Mars in 2148, humanity is spreading to the stars; the newest interstellar species, struggling to carve out its place in the greater galactic community.

On the edge of colonized space,
Paperback, 323 pages
Published May 1st 2007 by Del Rey (first published 2007)
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(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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May 05, 2016 LaylaNoir rated it really liked it
Buddy read with Sorina at Buddies Books and Baubles.


Was Mass Effect: Revelation a revelation?

It was, and it was not.

As a prequel to the game, it was about a young Anderson on a mission to investigate whatever little was left of an Alliance secret research station, about how Anderson first met Kahlee Sanders, intergalactic politics, the galaxy's point of view on the human species at that point in time and on AI, and it let's its reader accompany Saren through part of his life as a spectre.

Jan 18, 2012 Sesana rated it really liked it
I probably don't need to say that this book is only for Mass Effect fans, but I'll say it anyways. I doubt anyone who isn't already a fan of Mass Effect could get really invested here.

This book could be subtitled The Complete History of Why Anderson and Saren Hate Each Other's Guts. Yes, it's the full story of Anderson's failed Spectre attempt, and exactly how Saren screwed it up. It is interested to see a pre-Sovreign Saren, and see exactly how ruthless and morally bankrupt he already was. The
Apr 20, 2008 Matthew rated it it was ok
Haiku Review:

I think I wrote this
Story in the seventh grade.
It stunk back then, too.
Tama Wise
I am a fairly large fan of the Mass Effect game, but I have to admit that I certainly wasn't expecting Tolstoy (or insert any other good novelist here) when I got my hands on this book. It sold itself on a few things, that it was a prequel to the game. It would tell us how Saren came to hate humans so much, and why Captain Anderson failed as a Spectre.

If you're boggled already then that sort of shows you a little of how the book is. As a stand alone novel, it's a fairly throw away read set in a
Dirk Grobbelaar
It's quite easy to like this book if you approach it with the correct attitude. Yes, it is based on a video game franchise, and the downside is that readers will not really know how the story unfolds from here unless they play the game. It's a pity that the story of the first Mass Effect game has not been novelized as a sequel to Revelation. There is a sequel (Mass Effect: Ascension), but it takes place after the events of the game. I would have loved to read a novel featuring Commander Shepard, ...more
The Thousander Club
Nov 21, 2014 The Thousander Club rated it liked it
I have tried reading books based on popular video game series before, including World of Warcraft: Tides of Darkness by Aaron Rosenberg and Starcraft: Liberty's Crusade by Jeff Grubb. Both books were very poor. They're more concerned about maintaining a fast pace than developing characters and providing action set pieces than intriguing plot. It really is a shame because both of those books come from mythologies which are robust and interesting. I wasn't expecting A Canticle for Leibowitz when I ...more
Jul 14, 2015 Dara rated it really liked it
This is a great addition to the Mass Effect universe. The story revolved around David Anderson, Kahlee Sanders, and how SPECTRE Saren Arterius acquires a reaper artifact. This is set before the events of the first Mass Effect game. The three novels by Drew Karpyshyn are great complements to the MEU.
Apr 14, 2016 Alec rated it it was amazing
Drew Karpyshyn’s purpose for writing the sci-fi thriller Mass Effect: Revelation is strictly to entertain and inform. Karpyshyn is the lead writer for the Mass Effect video game series, so the introduction of Revelation as prequel material garnered support for the novel from the already established fan base. However, the novel is so good they need not have bothered. The book is told with a third-person omniscient viewpoint, with dialogue falling into first-person with respect to the speaker. Kar ...more
William Johnson
Reprinted from my website Secure Immaturity:

I’m trying to ease my way back into fiction ever since I got burned out on the very subject after earning my degree in English Literature at Northern Arizona University and Arizona State University. I just read too much. . .if that’s possible. . .and needed a break. For the last five years I’ve read endless history books and biographies. Hell, I’ve even read science books. I just abandoned fiction entirely. But lately I’ve needed some kind of escapism
Greg Stearns
Jun 09, 2009 Greg Stearns rated it liked it
I read this book the summer it came out because I was completely caught up in the Mass Effect pre-release whirlwind. One of my favorite things in science fiction that especially translates to games is the world building. And the people at BioWare have a reputation for building broad and cohesive worlds. I also knew going in that this was going to be a trashy video game summer read and in that respect it didn't dissapoint.

In the aknowledgments, Karpyshyn thanks his editor who "helped make my nove
Alan Solitar
Jan 17, 2008 Alan Solitar rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone
Mass Effect: Revelations is a truly phenomenal science fiction text. From the very first page you are hooked by this book's compelling and suspenseful nature. Mass Effect: Revelations follows the path of Lieutenant Anderson, an alliance space officer who is investigating the destruction of a human research base. During his exploration, he eventually uncovers a malicious plot of chicanery and corruption. However, he becomes shocked when he finds out that this activity was happening under his ver ...more
Mogsy (MMOGC)
Sep 13, 2015 Mogsy (MMOGC) rated it really liked it
I'm starting to really like Drew Karpyshyn. After reading his first Star Wars: Darth Bane book and now this, I'm convinced this is a guy who can write a concise novel without rushing the story.

Revelation was a pretty short book, yet I was surprised at how much I was able to get out of it. There was some strong character building, great action sequences, and even some background information into the technology and inhabitants of the Mass Effect World.

Like most novels in the video game tie-in ge
Apr 27, 2016 Sorina rated it really liked it

Buddy read with Layla at Buddies Books and Baubles.

Layla wrote a great review of the book, so I'll just keep mine short.

If I were to judge this book purely on a sci-fi genre merit, the story is lacking, and I did sometimes have the problem of not being able to connect the characters we saw on the page with the characters we experienced in the video game.

However, as I huge fan of the video games, I LOVED all the detail we got on the Mass Effect Universe. In fact, I wanted more. And yes, if colle
Jan 25, 2011 Jeff rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of the Mass Effect video game series
I don't think this book will appeal to those who haven't played the Mass Effect video games. As it is, this book provides a good backstory to the events that unfold in Mass Effect. Those who choose to read this obviously shouldn't expect great literature; it's pulp science fiction. The pacing is good and the action keeps your attention. One could easily read the entire book in a few hours.

For those who are looking for a space opera told in several different media, I would recommend the Mass Eff
Sep 11, 2010 Kati rated it it was ok
If I had to give my review a title, it would be "WHAT HAPPENED?!" Yes, in capslock.

I really loved the first part of the book, the introduction of the various races, of the universe in general, of the characters, especially of Grissom and Anderson, the attack on Sidon and the attempted rescue mission - all that was amazing. But then, something happened. And suddenly, I disliked everybody in the book.

The humans conducted illegal research with such a sense of appropriateness, as if they had the rig
Apr 01, 2016 Nancy rated it it was amazing
This was an extremely enjoyable read for me. I'm a HUGE Mass Effect fan. Currently almost through playing Mass Effect 2. Reading this prequel and finding out the back stories of the Alliance, the Citadel, David Anderson, Saren and Sovereign was fantastic. I would love to know how the author would have continued the Mass Effect story to its conclusion. If you're a fan of science fiction and especially the game, you'll really enjoy this book.
Nick Allen
May 05, 2015 Nick Allen rated it it was ok
Shelves: science-fiction
It scratches my itch for Mass Effect, but little else. I was intrigued by the author's attempts to make the character of Anderson a more complicated and reflexive character by having him ruminate on his own (and also humanity's) gender bias, but ultimately, the character development is starved and falls flat. Despite the fact that Anderson kind of recognizes that he's objectifying Kahlee, in the context of the novel, that's exactly what she ends up being: a damsel in distress whose unconvincing ...more
Carl Black
Oct 03, 2014 Carl Black rated it liked it
Real score 2.5 / 5

Firstly I should say that I love the Mass Effect games and I have played all of them more times than I actually needed too. Also this is my first read since finishing a very good and well written fantasy series. So maybe my standards were a little too high for a video game tie in novel.

For fans of the Mass Effect games (especially ME1) this book should be very interesting. It expands on the story of Captain Anderson's failure to become a Spectre and the events that lead to tha
Jul 22, 2016 Shaun rated it it was amazing
Mass Effect: Revelation… Okay, first off, to get it out of the way, this is a book based off a video game. I’ve tried a few times to explain why I start off with that, but none of them have read very well. I guess I just point it out to lower expectations. Call it prejudice, but I wouldn’t really be apt to remark about a book based off a game as being thrilling or a marvel. It’s a book based off a game. A book based off a game.

So! At first, the couple chapters, I didn’t like the book so much. Th
William Ristau
Mar 24, 2014 William Ristau rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 08, 2012 Kirsty rated it liked it
Very enjoyable, but I feel like some of the characters were really dull and empty. If you asked me to describe Kahlee Sanders, I probably couldn't say much more than, "Uh, she's a natural blonde?" She wasn't a strong character, and kinda flip-flopped between strong-military-woman and oh-no-hold-me-please, in my opinion. Didn't identify with her in the slightest.

It was great to get a bit of insight into Saren and Anderson, but I just felt like the plot sort of unravelled a bit towards the end.

I d
Dec 04, 2013 Jason rated it liked it
Recommends it for: Sci fi fans, Mass Effect fans, Unreal fans, etc.
I don’t normally read novels based on video games. With the exception of The Infernal City, I can’t think of one that I’ve been interested in. But, I started playing the Mass Effect games at the end of summer and I am hopelessly addicted to them now. The universe, the characters, and the story have completely engrossed me. When I found out that the author of this book was also the primary storywriter for the game, I decided to give it a shot.

Years before the events of Mass Effect, when Ca
Jan 06, 2014 Surin rated it it was ok
Interesting companion to the Mass Effect universe but predictable plot, careless editing (there are actually typos in the book!) and very dry almost boring writing left much to be desired. I took 3 weeks of active daily reading to finish this book which is a stark difference of my usual pace.

I am an obsessed fan when it comes to the Mass Effect universe. So when I read that revelation was a prequel to the ME games and is about Anderson and Saren I just had to get it! However I was quite disappo
Khaalidah Muhammad-Ali
Your species must know its place. ~ Saren Arterius
I liked this book far more than I expected I would. I figured that it would simply be a recap of what I already know of the Mass Effect Universe from the games. I was pleasantly surprised to find that not only is this story totally original, but it is a fitting prequel featuring our beloved Anderson and the most hated Saren.
Shepard's right. Humanity is ready to do its part. United with the rest of the Council, we have the strength to overcome
Mar 01, 2011 Urania rated it it was ok
I only picked up this book because I really love the Mass Effect games and thought I'd give it a shot. Like what some other reviewers said, I certainly wasn't expecting an amazing piece of literature because these things usually aren't, but given that this book was written by one of the two writers for the games (which are phenomenal, by the way), though, I guess I was really hoping for a little more.

To be fair, Revelation is all right as far as this type of franchise-driven fluff goes; it wasn'
The only reason this kept my attention until the end is because it's Mass Effect and I love those games. I seriously considered quitting a little over halfway through. The writing style leaves a lot to be desired. Drew Karpyshyn should stick to writing games because his prose is juvenile. I read better stories daily in my creative writing classes. It's like he doesn't understand the concept of a consistent point of view. He constantly explains things to the reader that we've either already seen ...more
James Witherspoon
Apr 13, 2013 James Witherspoon rated it really liked it
As a huge fan of the Mass Effect universe I wanted to the novels a shot. My expectation for the first volume were matched quite well. Now thanks to this book my loath for Saren has increased tenfold. So glad he meets his demise in the video game. (Woops. Spoilers. Sorry folks.) Loved the plot. Did not had the though of regret while tearing though the pages. Cast of characters were pleasing. Only regret is that the book did not have anyone other then Anderson, Saren, The council, (might have forg ...more
Jun 07, 2015 Giulia rated it liked it
Not particularly well written, but an easy and interesting read if you like the games
Aug 05, 2016 Veronika rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not an entirely terrible book, even to a person who has no idea what the game is all about - and I was, actually, planning to give it two (and at one point even three) stars. That was until the protagonist called interracial relationships 'disgusting' and the author introduced the notion that a punter should need to pay a brothel extra for a partner of a different race. That's just, what the hell. This book was written in 2007, that's the 21st century!
On the other hand, it has to be said that w
Jul 03, 2016 Ian rated it liked it
Pretty fun story in a universe we know with characters we love. It does a good job dancing around the lore of the first game and finally shows something that we've always heard of but was never fully explained until now. It's a formulaic genre book, but the formula works, so don't knock it for that. I'm not sure how well this would work as your first exposure to Mass Effect, as the story is fairly anemic on its own, but it's engaging enough if you love the games and wanted to know more. Far bett ...more
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Drew Karpyshyn is a Canadian author and game designer. After working at a credit union for some time, he eventually became a game developer. He joined BioWare towards the end of the Baldur's Gate series, and wrote the tie-in novel for Baldur's Gate II: Throne of Bhaal. He stayed with BioWare, where he worked on Neverwinter Nights, and became the Senior Writer on the critically acclaimed Star Wars: ...more
More about Drew Karpyshyn...

Other Books in the Series

Mass Effect (4 books)
  • Mass Effect: Ascension (Mass Effect, #2)
  • Mass Effect: Retribution (Mass Effect, #3)
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