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Solitude

Dimension Space, Book One
Narrated by: R.C. Bray, Julia Whelan
Series: Dimension Space, Book 1
Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (446 ratings)

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Summary

Winner - Listeners Choice Award - Best Science Fiction

A mysterious wave of light erupts from the supercollider and wipes humanity from the planet, leaving only two people in its wake - one on the surface and the other stranded on the ISS, neither aware of the other. After months of desperate isolation, Earth’s last man discovers he’s not the only one after all. The last woman is stranded alone aboard the International Space Station and barely alive - so begins a race against time. If you like action-packed novels, you'll love the electrifying action in this apocalyptic thriller.

Army aviator Vaughn Singleton is a highly intelligent, lazy man, but when he emerges from a NASA vacuum chamber, he soon discovers he is the last human left on Earth, a position for which he is ill equipped. 

Stranded alone on the ISS, Commander Angela Brown watches a wave of light sweep across the planet. Over the next weeks and months, Angela struggles to contact someone on the surface as she fights to survive aboard a deteriorating space station.

Then, from orbit above Central Europe, Angela glimpses the dark underpinnings of humanity's demise. It appears something went horribly wrong with a physics experiment at the supercollider in Geneva, Switzerland. As a theoretical physicist, Angela might be able to unravel and maybe even reverse the events that led to the apocalypse...if she could only get there.

Can Vaughn find a path to space and back? Can Angela - the only person with clues to the mystery of humanity's disappearance - survive until he does?

"Like The Martian on (and above) Earth. An epic survival story with very human characters, clever problem-solving and a gripping mystery. The end left me with no idea where Dean was going with the story, I couldn’t wait for the next book." (Craig Alanson, NYT best-selling author of Expeditionary Force)

"R.C. Bray and Julia Whelan are individually stellar. Having them co-voice Dean M. Cole's superb Dimension Space Series is a stroke of genius. Rich with elements of every genre, Solitude is an outstanding listen." (Nicholas Sansbury Smith, USA Today best-selling author of Hell Divers)

©2017 Dean M. Cole (P)2017 Dean M. Cole

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A continuous series of unfortunate events

RC Bray great as usual. Storyline a continuous sequence of disasters which eventually became predictable and irritating.

10 people found this helpful

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So badly written I couldn't listen to it

Either Dean M. Cole doesn't have a copy editor or the one he does have needs to be fired. Here's a free tip: pick a way to refer to a character and stick to it. In a scene with two characters, I shouldn't be bombarded with "Vaughn", "Singleton", "the Army Captain", and "Mark", "Watney", "the Astronaut" and whatever other designations Cole can't decide between. Even when Vaughn is alone in a scene, the multitude of ways of referring to him persist. It's distracting and unnecessary and I honestly don't know how it made it into print, let alone audio. Maybe it isn't as distracting in print; I'll never know because I will never again listen to or read anything by this author.

R. C. Bray and Julia Whelan are as good as ever.

13 people found this helpful

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Dire

As with all fiction, if the characters are convincing and engaging enough, they can make up for some ropey plots, but unfortunately they are not. However I stuck with it to the end, which of course is a cliff hanger, to propel you into the next book, but in this case , all it has done has done has brought on a feeling of relief that the book is over.

4 people found this helpful

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Frustratingly formulaic...

An intriguing idea of a plot spoiled by an amateurish approach. Somebody must once have told the author that drama is the winning formula for holding audience attention. And boy did he play that card. Any and every opportunity to create a dramatic moment is stuffed into this tale - no matter how unbelievable or superfluous to the plot. The result is a slow moving story written, it seems, with the aim of dragging things out for that sequel after money-making sequel. The only saving grace is the great narration, particularly R C Bray. Overall - this is one to miss.

12 people found this helpful

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Going to be left hanging.

An awesome book narrated by the very best.
Shame Audible haven't made it clear this is book 1 of a series that's yet to be completed. It'll be a long wait to conclude this gripping story.

11 people found this helpful

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Don't Leave Solitude Alone!

In Solitude Dean Cole delivers a fast-paced episode of apocalyptic fiction. Two characters left completely alone and isolated must cross the planet and even space itself to save each other. It's a genuine roller-coaster ride and the action just keeps coming as our rather accident-prone pair crash and bump their way across the planet and the space near it. At times I wasn't sure I'd give odds on either of them managing to navigate their way across an empty room while at others they achieved amazing things. Although at times there is plenty of scientific and technical detail in here expect your credulity to get a severe workout as things progress. There are definitely parallels with books like The Martian but I doubt anyone will want to make a case for this being built on solid scientific ground. The author does however do very well in terms of explaining why these two, and only these two survive.

The narration, well RC Bray is of course a maestro and gives his usual masterful performance. Here though he shares the stage with Julia Whelan. It works brilliantly at first emphasising the separation between the characters and their very different situations. Maybe it's less effective later on but not wanting to do spoilers I won't say why. I'll settle for saying that both narrators do fine jobs with their parts.

Although the book does complete the advertised part of the story there is clearly more to come and you won't get all the answers you might want about why things happened. There are lots of thrills and spills though and the tension continues right up until the ending which sets up the next book's opening intrigue.

14 people found this helpful

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Excellent

loved it great story excellent character's leads on to next book cant wait to download

1 person found this helpful

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Really enjoyed it!

Great story I thought having two narrators easy to except them swapping and reading for both of the people.
Will get the next book.

1 person found this helpful

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Amazing

Brilliant story, brilliant author and two....yes Two amazing narrators.

I’m as happy as four mice in a hairdo.

1 person found this helpful

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Fast paced sci fi with great characters

Best audiobook I've listened to for ages!
RC Bray and Julia Whelan are fantastic as usual, voicing two characters you really care about.
Finished this in two settings and going straight onto book two of the series! Recommend this book to anyone who loved the Martian.

1 person found this helpful

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Profile Image for Philip Maddox
  • Philip Maddox
  • 19-10-17

Eh...

Until this book, I haven't heard anything by R.C. Bray that I didn't absolutely love. And while Julia Whelan is also a talented narrator, there was really no need for both of them in the way it was put together. Either could have done it alone and the final product would probably have been better for it.

The characters themselves weren't particularly likeable. They weren't necessarily 'unlikeable' , but I found nothing in either of them to engage my interest or make me care about them or what they were going through.

The general plot device presented throughout the entire book was, "This'll be easy. Oh no! Something horrible just went wrong!" ..and while it has been used to great effect by other authors, for some reason it just felt tired and poorly implemented in this story.

Then there's "coincidence." Most stories rely on coincidence to some extent and it's usually easy enough to gloss over. If I actually cared about either character I may have been able to ignore all of the stars that had to align for the story to even be able to take place...but when the characters' good luck (when they actually have some) is every bit convenient and necessary for the story to continue as their bad luck... It's hard to be invested in what the CHARACTERS are doing because it so rarely matters.

There's no intertwined reading between the two narrators. R.C. reads the chapters mostly focusing on the man, Julia reads the chapters about the woman, and while that conceptually makes sense, it kind of breaks down every time both characters actually get to interact. Each narrator reads for both characters and each reads them differently so there's no continuity in how personalities are presented. Some of that could be artistically explained away as each character perceiving the other differently (though I didn't much care for it), and I understand how much work it would be to actually record and edit together all of the respective lines. Overall though, I felt that the way it was done took away from the total experience and made the collaboration feel kind of pointless.

By the time I reached the end, I'd pretty much become so disengaged that I was more just glad that it was over.

242 people found this helpful

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  • Chris Smith
  • 06-07-17

What's up with all the positive reviews?

What was most disappointing about Dean M. Cole’s story?

There was little to no character development and the action scenes were overdone. I kept waiting for something original and interesting to happen and continued to wait the entire book. I kept felt like I was reading some poor mash up of plot-lines taken from the movies Castaway and Gravity, combined with The Martian.

Any additional comments?

I don’t know why there are so many positive reviews. I read a lot of sci-fi and this was complete garbage. The plot was unoriginal and formulaic. The vocabulary of the author seemed limited with an overreliance of clichés and repetitive descriptors (e.g., pregnant pause, first pump). Every other word seems to be “in spite” – why not use “despite” periodically to change things up? Don’t waste your time on this.

160 people found this helpful

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  • Amelia Gentilini
  • 13-04-17

best I've read since The Martian

I'm a huge fan of sci-fi that isn't always about Aliens or at least takes a bit for them to show up. I loved the humanity of the characters. they had ups and downs and in betweens. the pacing of the story was wonderful and had me hugging my seat and breathing in relief at the proper moments. the way everything happened you almost hope that humanity isn't gone as there are no bodies to be seen. I can't wait to see where Dean m. Cole goes next with this story.

56 people found this helpful

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  • patrick shearn
  • 09-12-19

Forget to turn up the volume...

I rarely write reviews but this is that lame. The poor readers trying to create drama out of the rocket scientist jet pilot heroes forgetting to plug things in, suck in their gut or turn up the volume on a radio is just pathetic. Unreal. I am quitting but I want my life back.

5 people found this helpful

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  • Brian
  • 16-06-17

What. A. Story.

I honestly didn't even see the comparison to The Martian and I Am Legend (I try to not read the synopsis of a book that I'm pretty sure I'm going to love) -- but that is a great combination of exactly what this story was.  I hate copying exactly what is written in the description on Amazon, but when it's right, it's right.

Dean M. Cole can write! Every time I thought "okay, this is it, he's got it!" or "she's got it!" he continued to throw everything at the two main characters.  It got to the point where I was pretty sure that both of them were going to give up numerous times.

A story about what could potentially be the last two people in the world and one of them is stuck on the International Space Station is already a story that I would read in a heartbeat.  Then you throw in that R.C. Bray and Julia Whelan are going to dual narrate it? Okay, now I'm salivating. Oh, and it's funny and heartbreaking at the same time like The Martian? Jesus, okay, I bought the book, let's go!

We're almost at the half-way point of the year and I believe that I may have found my audiobook of the year already.  Ironically it follows a similar type story as last years -- but this one has even fewer people in it.

There was a part of the book where I was a little worried around R.C. Bray narrating it -- not because of him or his narration at all (he's seriously one of the best in the world and is the sole reason you're reading this blog today).  It was because there was a character named Mark.  And I couldn't get "Whatney" out of my head every time he would say his name.  I was seriously concerned, but my concern didn't last as long as I'd expected.  There was even a line that made me pause the audiobook:  "...duck tape... Oh right, you're Mark Whatney and this is The Martian".

I honestly don't even have to go into Bray and Whelan's narration of this because it was spot on and perfect.  One of the best audiobooks I've ever listened to.  Definitely up there with The Martian as Bray's best performance.

Overall, Solitude is easily one of the best books I've read in 2017 and will be in my memory for years to come.  I will gladly be recommending this to all of my friends and family -- especially those who loved The Martian (or enjoyed I Am Legend).  Dean M. Cole has shot himself up to the top of my 'to-read' list and I will be eagerly awaiting the next book in this series.

I was given a free copy of this which has not affected my review at all.

If you enjoyed my review, please vote for it! If you'd like to see more like this you can check out BriansBookBlog DOT com.

80 people found this helpful

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  • Brian Taylor
  • 11-04-20

Incredibly Verbose

You can literally fast for through 70% of this book and not miss a thing. If this was a novella then it would be good. Unfortunately he took a novella and tried to make it a full length book. Also having a female deridder made me rate the performance from 5 stars down to 3 stars. The male narrator is incredibly awesome not so much of a female narrator.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Lisa Jordan
  • 20-05-19

I don't get the hype

Got this book after reading so many positive reviews, which I now don't understand at all. There is good potential with the premise, but the actual story is repetitive and predictable. As another reviewer has pointed out, it is a cycle of poorly thought-out plans, coupled with "what could go wrong?" attitudes that inevitably lead to narrowly-escaped catastrophe. Like I said, repetitive and predictable.
The dialogue was... problematic at best. Much of it was clunky and forced. It didn't help that the two performers were doing the voices for both characters when reading their parts. It led to some confusing changes in tone and delivery.
Overall, this one was a real let-down for me. While I am kind of curious as to what happens next, I don't think I can be bothered to muddle through this author's writing style again to find out.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 07-04-17

just buy the book...

Don't bother reading the cover flap just give Amazon and Audible your money. you must buy both.
Dean Cole has woven a story with emotion anguish, love, laughter, and suspense. R.C. Bray and Julia Whelan brings this story to life like no others. They just owned this story.
I haven't been this emotionally involved in a story since Andy Weirs" The Martian" or Ryk Browns "Frontiers Saga"

Oh and Dean... write faster dammit, write faster.

25 people found this helpful

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  • Carrie Downs-Minetree
  • 18-06-19

Wow!

It's been a long time since I've read a book with a cliffhanger! This is a fun story. I'll definitely keep listening.

3 people found this helpful

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  • Justin
  • 31-10-17

I Really Wanted to Like This One

The concept for this story is great. No zombies, no rampaging biker gangs, just mysterious emptiness and two characters trying to survive. It should be a fun read that leaves you wanting more. But it's just... exhausting.

First, Mr. Cole is badly in need of a good editor. He reuses phrases far too much. One repetition that is particularly annoying in audio format is his tendency to replace "his" and "her" with "the man's" and "the woman's" every other sentence. This doesn't seem like a big deal at first, but by the end of the book, it's infuriating. It is also confusing in places.

The author tried to combine the movie "Passengers" and the book "The Martian" and... failed to execute. After the ninth should-have-been-deadly mishap, I almost turned the audiobook off. It's quickly obvious that if something can go wrong in this book, it will, and that makes the tense moments tedious, not tense. You know the characters will survive in some improbable way.

The less we say about the really bad romantic interactions, the better.

While I have numerous problems with the book, I have none with the narration. R.C. Bray's and Julia Whelan's narration is great, and I will absolutely enjoy other books narrated by them.

31 people found this helpful