The Third Man Factor presents an astonishing idea- that people at the very edge of death, often adventurers or explorers, detect an unseen being beside them who encourages them to make one final effort to survive. If only a handful of people had ever experienced the Third Man, it might be dismissed as a delusion but over the years, the phenomenon has occurred again and again - to 9/11 survivors, mountaineers, divers, polar explorers, prisoners of war, solo sailors, aviators and astronauts. All have escaped traumatic events and all have strikingly similar tales to tell about the close presence of a helper or guardian. The mysterious force has been explained as everything from hallucination to divine intervention. Recent neurological research suggests something else. In The Third Man Factor John Geiger combines history, science and great story-telling to explain this secret to survival, a Third Man who - in the words of legendary Italian climber Reinhold Messner - 'leads you out of the impossible'.