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The Fifth Man (Oxygen #2)

3.95  ·  Rating Details ·  299 Ratings  ·  32 Reviews
Valkerie Jansen is tough, beautiful, and being pursued by every man on the planet. Literally. The planet in question is Mars, with a total population of four.

Days before a giant dust storm is projected to strike their camp, Valkerie is attacked by an unseen assailant.

Fortunately, there are only three suspects.

Unfortunately, all three of them . . . are innocent.

This is the
ebook, Second Edition (Writers Journey Edition), 572 pages
Published May 25th 2012 by DitDat, Inc. (first published October 1st 2001)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 497)
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Sep 28, 2014 Robynn rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I haven't read Randy Ingermanson before, but I know he's the Snowflake Method guy, so I wanted to see it in action. I'm hoping this book isn't the norm. I'm thinking I picked this up during a Kindle promotion, so it may have been .99 or free.

This story has failed to engage my interest, I'm 80% done, and I'm not sure I'll finish. I've read this far because I kept hoping it would get better (like Jonathan and Mr. Norrell, or The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest that took 150 pages to get to the
Jeff Tonkinson
Dec 31, 2014 Jeff Tonkinson rated it it was ok
This was a difficult book to read because it was so ridiculous I kept putting it down. But the predicament of being stuck on Mars with a mysterious sickness, possible life on Mars, and saboteur at mission control had too much potential. On top of that it was a "Christian" novel.

Neither the characters nor the story are believable. Apparently NASA's vetting process allows psychotics and Phd's with the maturity of a 13 yr old. Too much time spent on puppy love. And they go from one life-threatenin
Timothy Bateson
Jun 20, 2015 Timothy Bateson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great finish to a two book series

This book is almost as good as "Oxygen", the first in the set. Having reached Mars the crew must now overcome a new set of challenges associated with their mission, living in a remote planet, and try to remain sane when their company consists of just the four of them.
Just like "Oxygen", "The Fifth Man" builds on the suspense and mystery from start to finish, with twists and turns of fate that are sometimes hard to predict. I regret to say that I worked out the
Kerry Nietz
Aug 05, 2012 Kerry Nietz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I’ll admit, I’ve been a distracted reader lately. Too many things pulling for my attention. Consequently, “The Fifth Man” took me much longer to complete than I expected. Even so, it was an easy book to pick up and read a page or two at a time.

Starting out where the preceding book left off,” this tale finds the crew of the Ares 10 now on Mars and well into their first calamity. The action takes off, and goes from one tension-inducing situation to another—all the way until the end. It is an enjo
Kyle Pratt
Jan 25, 2013 Kyle Pratt rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: hard science fiction fans
Shelves: science-fiction
The Fifth Man takes up the story where the first novel, Oxygen, left us--on the surface of Mars. Both novels would be considered hard science fiction in that everything in the stories is within the realm of science and technology.

This novel, published in 2002, is a sequel to Oxygen. Both are well-researched and crafted, near future, Christian science fiction novel. Oxygen begins in the year 2014 just before the first mission to Mars. Microbial ecologist Valkerie Jansen is assigned to the Ares 10
D.M. Dutcher
It feels more like a technothriller ala Michael Crichton than true SF, but the plot's confusing twists and lack of real action make it average. A direct sequel to Oxygen, but you can read it without reading the first book.

The mars team has made it safely there after the events in Oxygen, and are busy with the hard work of research. A random cave-in nearly traps Valkerie, and provides a surprisingly discovery: evidence of bacterial life on mars. Unfortunately that comes with a price, the possibil
Carol McClain
Aug 10, 2012 Carol McClain rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Phenomenal. My only criticism is: do not read this if you have obligations that need to be tended. As in the first of the series (Oxygen), every time you think the novel's conflicts have resolved, they get worse. Tension builds until nothing matters to the reader other than you turn the page and find out how the mess is resolved.

As the novel opens, we find Kaggo, Hamster, Lexy and Valkeryie safe on Mars, and they begin to live their dream until...illness, strange happenings, attacks from nowher
Ann Thomas
Feb 24, 2015 Ann Thomas rated it it was amazing
After reading Oxygen, I couldn't wait to get my hands on this sequel. The pace is fast, the emotion and suspense are breathtaking, and there are twists a-plenty. In short, I loved it! Highly recommended. And for the writers among us, my Kindle edition had bonus appendices showing how to structure scenes using examples from the book. Brilliant bonus!
Kevin Black
Apr 27, 2016 Kevin Black rated it liked it
I liked it. More weirdness than can reasonably be expected in so few people, and more interesting things on Mars than can be expected. Oh, and the psychiatry is off. But that's why they call it fiction.
H.L. Wegley
May 05, 2014 H.L. Wegley rated it really liked it
Lots of twists, turns, and suspense in the plot of this continuation of the Mars mission story which began in Oxygen. The ending was funny & clever, but a bit abrupt. This was a fun read that you're sure to enjoy if you liked Oxygen, however, I liked Oxygen a little better so I gave The Fifth Man 4 stars.
Jul 23, 2009 rjp316 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Liked this book - a little mystery, a little romance and a little sci-fi. However parts of the book tended to be too computer techie for me but overall well worth the read. I liked the first book in the series a little better. The book ended well but I was disappointed that there is not a third book in the series. Would recommend this book to friends and even have my husband started on the series. Might be hard to find this book as it is out of print and my huge local library only had the first ...more
Art Lueder
Sep 24, 2013 Art Lueder rated it really liked it
The sequel to Oxygen, we pick up the story with the astronauts on Mars six months or so later. The story races along at a fast pace giving the reader little chance to catch their breath. The crew discovers evidence of life (bacterial) and suddenly Valkiri and Kennedy fall ill. Mission control is seriously considering making them stay on Mars to prevent them from bringing back any Mars bugs to Earth and suddenly strange noises and an attack on Valkiri by an unknown assailant has everyone on edge. ...more
Monica Rodriguez
A terrific thrill to read, even better than the first, Oxygen. The tension remained high through most of the story, with few points for a breather. Best of all, I really didn't know who the culprit was until the reveal, a true surprise. This story has the added bonus of being set on Mars, an ongoing fascination of mine.

And the appendices hold a bonus for new writers, with excellent advice I've already applied to my writing.
Dec 13, 2015 Karlie rated it liked it
It was ok. Decent sci-fi sequel
Barbara Carter
Mar 02, 2015 Barbara Carter rated it it was amazing
Loved this story. Grabbed my interest and took me away to Mars! Fun and engaging! Read it, enjoy!
Vincent Bernhardt
Jun 10, 2013 Vincent Bernhardt rated it it was amazing
A solid sequel, and that's not always easy to do.

This guy can write science fiction, and he doesn't throw in a lot of fantasy (which is okay with me). Pure, well-written sci-fi is hard to come by. This one is based on solid science (mostly - the eco-niche is sort of questionable, but possible, so you can let it slide).

AND they know the Houston/NASA area pretty well. I like that. A lot.

Good pace. Good characters. Good story.
May 18, 2012 Marissa rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I didn't like this as much as Oxygen, which was surprising since after Oxygen, I was really excited to read it. It just seemed like too much of the same plot from Oxygen. Kennedy might have been the bad guy again and they were in life or death situations way too often for me to be shocked every time it happened. I liked the characters in the previous book but in this book they fall apart for me.
Steven Sheeley
Feb 09, 2015 Steven Sheeley rated it it was amazing
Shelves: reviewed
Very interesting book to read and a very interesting plot/storyline. I had just completed Oxygen and was looking forward to reading the remaining book so I jumped right in and got The Fifth Man.

I was not disappointed. All in all, a very good read as it is a very engaging story.
Jan 25, 2014 Coryann rated it liked it
I had pretty high hopes for The Fifth Man after loving the first book, Oxygen. However, much to my dismay I was disappointed in this book. It just didn't really seem to go anywhere and where it did end up "going", I didn't really care for. It was just okay. If I could I would give it 2.5 stars. I really struggled to finish this one...
Aug 28, 2012 Lawrence rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read Oxygen and enjoyed it as a suspenseful sci-fi story. I thought this one moved at a break neck pace with elements of sci-fi, suspense and mystery combined nicely. Found myself literally holding my breath at certain moments in the story. Might not be the story for you if you're paranoid about things that go bump in the night.
Chas Funderburg
This book lives up to the well-written craft of the authors on the predecessor in this series, "Oxygen." I couldn't put the book down, and finished it at 03:30 hours, on New Years Day!

Was a little tired when I woke up later that morning, but I would do the same with any book written by these authors.
Randy Alcorn
The Fifth Man is good science and good fiction. It’s true to the details but is never sidetracked by them. Olson and Ingermanson deliver an entertaining futuristic story, with action, romance, and surprising twists.
Jun 28, 2012 Melissa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-fiction
Four people make it safely to Mars to only find that there's something out there maybe hunting them. Great fast-paced book. The writing was tight and kept the suspence going.
Feb 18, 2012 Carl rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The first book in this series (Oxygen) is now available as an e-book:
Sep 16, 2013 Joyce rated it it was amazing
This was a wonderful, thoughtful book. John Olson and Randy Ingermanson make a great writing team. Randy Ingermanson adds excitement to John Olson's thoughtful details.
Henry McLaughlin
Fascinating sequel to Oxygen.
If you're looking for an example of how to put tension on every page, this is the book to read.
Oct 31, 2014 Mike rated it did not like it
Just not my kind of reading. Takes way too long to get through anything.
Doraine Bennett
Mar 08, 2013 Doraine Bennett rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Page turner! Nice job as a sequel. Never lags or feels predictable.
Jan 10, 2013 Amy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing book, Well researched, gripping, kept me up all night!
Jun 16, 2012 Merit rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great Sci-Fi- Read "Oxygen" also!
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John B. Olson is a novelist who lives with his wife Amy and two children in the San Francisco Bay Area. John earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin at Madison and did postdoctoral research at the University of California at San Francisco. His books have won several awards, including a Christy Award, a Christy finalist, a Silver Angel award, and placement on the New York Pu ...more
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Other Books in the Series

Oxygen (2 books)
  • Oxygen (Oxygen, #1)

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