Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Fifth Science” as Want to Read:
The Fifth Science
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Fifth Science

4.48  ·  Rating details ·  2,252 ratings  ·  228 reviews
The Galactic Human Empire was built atop four sciences: logic, physics, psychology, and sociology. Standing on those pillars, humans spent 100,000 years spreading out into the galaxy: warring, exploring, partying — the usual. Then there was the fifth science. And that killed the empire stone dead.

The Fifth Science is a collection of 12 stories, beginning at the start of
Paperback, 336 pages
Published February 13th 2019 by Independently published
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Fifth Science, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Fifth Science

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.48  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,252 ratings  ·  228 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Fifth Science
Feb 27, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Youtube artist Exurb1a crafted this collection of loosely connected short works and centered around his world building of a declining galactic human empire stretching out over 100,000 years.

Twelve short stories and some bridge material to help explain things form this very unique anthology. Central to what makes this work is the author’s physics and philosophy heavy take on all things human. In an afterward he describes the term “panpsychism” as “the aspects of consciousness can’t be explained i
Ivan Vuković
Oct 21, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: literature
The cunt can write. Good stuff, definitely recommended ;)
Jan 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Honestly Inspiring

Happened to help change my life, thought I should share.

First I have to say that this book is fantastically written. I’ve long been a fan of Exurb1a’s YouTube videos and I’m so glad that I took the time to start reading his books too. I love how well his sense of humour and ability to trigger an existential crisis have translated across both mediums.

Consciousness, particularly artificial consciousness, acts as the focal point for these stories. While reading this book, perhaps
May 舞
Aug 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: science-fiction
Such an unexpectedly fascinating read; Exurb1a never ceases to impress. Some of the stories were frankly phenomenal, like And the Leaves All Sing of God, Water for Lunch, Be Awake, Be Good, and The Caretaker, while others barely made the cut. Overall though, it was a pretty decent read. I'm still trying to get my head around the idea of conscious stars lining up to build some sort of a galactic machine :'D
Also, there were numerous profound and thought-provoking quotes in this book, for example:
Michelle Bradley
Just read it. Do it now, you won't regret it

Just read it. Do it now, you won't regret it



Oct 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
In simple words, it is collection of short sci-fi stories that are easy to read and enjoyable. Each story, although different, follows an underlying narrative and philosophy unique to Ex.

In terms of the stories themselves, they each present an interesting thought within them, which one could either think about for some time as a philosophical thought experiment or just enjoy the world crafted by the author.

I think I'd risk spoilers if I reveal the themes of the stories being that the structure
Jan 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What a fucking ride!
Daniel Arne
Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is one of the best science fiction books I have ever read.

Please keep in mind that the author is most likely a sex offender. I'd already purchased when I found out, but its worth noting.
Jun 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I think exurb1a's writing is nothing formidable. He is yet to gain experience. However, I have to admit that the way he formulates his ideas is just wonderful.
Some stories in this book are not that good; others are pure art. It really makes you think about how humanity will always remain the same, even if we explore the universe, even if we create sentient artificial intelligence, even if we create god.
But that's not necessarily bad. Sure, we have a lot of defects. But we are more than that.

Jun 04, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I liked it a lot. Some of the writing was a bit scattershot but wow, what concepts
Kuenzang Palmo
Dec 19, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: worth-the-read
[convinced exurb1a should be one of the writers for black mirror]
3.5 stars. A very golden-ageish series of short stories, reminiscent of Asimov or Clark, spinning stories that span the length of the universe.
Ilie Simion
Feb 26, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good collection of stories written with the casual characteristic style of Ex (follow his youtube channel if you don't already). Philosophy, humour, spirituality, existentialism mix in each of the stories, all happening in the same universe, at different point in time and space of the human empire, all revolving around the concept of conscience. Characters are all-in-all pretty well portrayed, although some lack depth. You won't care much for them, or remember them for a long time, but they are ...more
Aug 12, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The Fifth Science probably offers a somewhat complete worldview of a Galactic Empire’s deflation and downfall, but its success in delivering a truly original perspective seemed hampered by two significant faults. First, there is the tendency to accentuate the imagined universe with details of our own. This isn’t necessarily a fault, as elements of a familiar universe can help provide grounding for an author’s creative leaps, so my issue has more to do with execution, where the author includes ex ...more
Jul 10, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
Not a fan of short stories, my son got this for my birthday so I didn't know it was short stories. It is well written. ...more
Benno Krojer
Oct 17, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
There are books that pretend to be deep and even some that are actually deep but just don't reach and inspire you. This was not one of those. This book made me think about stuff I never thought about before in a very fundamental and beautiful way. All the stories were refreshing and had their unique theme. Each tackled a different core question of human nature.
I love Exurb1a's YouTube channel and think his humour is one of the best I've witnessed in my life. Therefore I enjoyed his style of writ
May 04, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
never rly delved into science fiction before this book, but it was a good entryway into sci-fi themes and philosophy. the ideas in each short story were complex but the author writes in a simplified way, so that it’s accessible to younger audiences and people like me who haven’t studied science since year 10 lol—

all in all, i liked some of the stories and their morals more than others, but probably wouldn’t read again anytime soon tho bc the writing style sometimes was a bit too in-your-face and
Jonathan Wen
Oct 29, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book discusses the complex sciences, politics, philosophies, and morals of the present and the future. The book is a great mix of suspense, science and facts, humor and much more. The book is a collection of great stories that all wraps up into one epic conclusion. The characters are all relatable and almost like real people and you can truly feel a bond formed between the characters. As soon as I picked up this book I was wrapped up in it and this is one of the best books I've read in a lo ...more
Ashley Woodrow
Sep 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Superb book.

A Podcast about a boardgame led me to google an unrelated book. Which made me watch a YouTube video which took me to a science vid and then to a history vid and then to an Exurb1a video about the universe, where I spent over an hour on the channel. Then the Fifth Science showed up as a tailored Amazon advertisment on my Podcast app.

I'm glad that I dedicated part of my 'day out in the cosmos' to reading this. You should read it too.

And yet, for some reason I still resent those bloody
Jul 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019
A neat little anthology of stories detailing the discovery of the Fifth Science and how it causes humanity's demise. Easy to read but still manages to deal with very interesting topics and questions (seriously, somebody read this cause I wanna talk about so much from this book)

My favourites were probably the Archaeological story and the "mix of Red vs Blue and The Village" story

Pretty cool, go read it (plus the cover art is beautiful)
Daniel Verderese
Jun 23, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very entertaining, not amazing

This book, or collection of stories, is very entertaining and thought provoking. Some of the stories are hit or miss though with a few being excellent and some i was just reading to try and get through. I recommend it for people who like physics, sci-fi, and space overall
Savyasachi Jagadeeshan
Similar to hitchhikers guide series. Less funny. More grandiose. More boring.
Aditya Prasad
I love the videos this guy makes. Super inspiring, great stories, and other cool stuff that are hard to describe with a few words. The guy is unique. There is also a ton of controversy around him. Making him a prime case study for why it's ok to love the art and seperate it from the artist. But that is a topic worth really delving into.

Anyway coming to the book itself, Exurb1a manages to create a most fabulous world. There are some true gems in there,

For Every Dove a Bullet

A good way to start th
Feb 27, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I was initially surprised when my science fiction book club chose The Fifth Science to read. The author is Exurb1a. Exurb1a has a YouTube channel where he reads some of his work, tells jokes and performs music. I went into this book with pretty low expectations and ended up pleasantly surprised on how much I enjoyed The Fifth Science.
The book consists of approximately a dozen short stories having to do with the fifth science. The first 4 sciences are logic, physics, psychology and sociology. The
Oct 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
Complete art. From start to finish. Splitting up the timeline into little stories kept it captivating and fresh, and the overarching theme is incredible. Eye-opening in so many ways, from the theories of consciousness to the subtle reminders of our own immorality, there were countless times I had to put the book down and just think about what was being said. Very philosophical but still sci-fi enough.
Oct 27, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a great collection of short stories along the same vein as Black Mirror or Twilight Zone... weird, nerdy, a little dark, and highly entertaining.
Jan 12, 2021 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: ebook
Bear & Goose must have put this book into this universe. After reading this I feel more than glad to inhabit this universe. Now, let us go for a walk.
Wilson  Ble
Jun 17, 2021 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The perfect book to delve into philosophy and expand one's horizon without having to deal with the jargon, especially when this is a short story.
Thank you, my existentialist turtle
Leo Lloyd Catalan
One of the best books I've ever read. The stories are so phenomenal. The stories always leaves you wanting for more, what happens next? i dont know.

Definitely a must read. like REALLY
Aug 22, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The Fifth Science is a collection of short stories, though less of an anthology and more episodic. It chronicles the rise of humanity from shooting and screwing in a singular planet, to the discovery of interstellar travel for shooting and screwing across galaxies.

The world-building is a charming delight. Technology has become terrifyingly efficient; bigger, shinier, smarter toys for the same scared, sweaty, but always stubborn ape. Author Exurb1a’s characters find themselves sitting in idyllic
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • There Is No Antimemetics Division
  • Fine Structure
  • Instantiation
  • Ra
  • Sapience: A Collection of Science Fiction Short Stories
  • Ed
  • Notes from the End of Everything
  • The Bosch: A Novella (Polity Universe)
  • Wherever Seeds May Fall
  • The Forest & Pale Green Dot: Book One & Two of The Forest Series
  • Lockdown Tales
  • The Expert System’s Champion (Expert System, #2)
  • Déjà Vu
  • Phenomena
  • The Fable of the Dragon-Tyrant
  • The Atlantropa Articles: A Novel
  • Prelude to Extinction
  • The Long Bad Friday (Oddjobs, #5)
See similar books…
See top shelves…
Exurb1a likes fiction with a metaphysical backbone. He enjoys trying to write that kind of stuff himself.

He also runs a subpar YouTube channel of the same name.

News & Interviews

Oh hey, we're nearly halfway through 2021! We can't really believe it either... Traditionally, this is the time when the Goodreads editorial...
66 likes · 11 comments
“Hell isn't a fire pit but a museum of regrets.” 44 likes
“Most humans were not malicious, only drastically misguided and desperate in their loneliness. They learned at some point that there was an eccentric core to their personality and that it was possible no one else shared their own brand of eccentricity. They put up screens around that core to shield from embarrassment and shame. For all the pompous forms in which writers and musicians have described it, love was surely that moment when the screens might come down in front of another human, if only for a moment, and freely give them a long, unfettered look into the true middle where the fear and anguish lives.” 15 likes
More quotes…