As M. E. Thomas says of her fellow sociopaths, we are your neighbors, co-workers, and quite possibly the people closest to you: lovers, family, friends. Our risk-seeking behavior and general fearlessness are thrilling, our glibness and charm alluring. Our often quick wit and outside-the-box thinking make us appear intelligent - even brilliant. We climb the corporate ladder faster than the rest, and appear to have limitless self-confidence.... Who are we? We are highly successful, non-criminal sociopaths and we comprise 4% of the American population (that's 1 in 25 people!).
Confessions of a Sociopath takes listeners on a journey into the mind of a sociopath, revealing what makes the tick and what that means for the rest of humanity. Written from the point of view of a diagnosed sociopath, it unveils these men and women who are "hiding in plain sight" for the very first time.
Confessions of a Sociopath is part confessional memoir, part primer for the wary. Drawn from Thomas' own experiences; her popular blog, Sociopathworld.com; and current and historical scientific literature, it reveals just how different - and yet often very similar - sociopaths are from the rest of the world. The book confirms suspicions and debunks myths about sociopathy and is both the memoir of a high-functioning, law-abiding (well, mostly) sociopath and a roadmap - right from the source - for dealing with the sociopath in your life, be it a boss, sibling, parent, spouse, child, neighbor, colleague or friend.
As Thomas argues, while sociopaths aren't like everyone else, and it's true some of them are incredibly dangerous, they are not inherently evil. In fact, they're potentially more productive and useful to society than neurotypicals or "empaths", as they fondly like to call "normal" people. Confessions of a Sociopath demystifyies sociopathic behavior and provides listeners with greater insight on how to respond or react to protect themselves, live among sociopaths without becoming victims, and even beat sociopaths at their own game, through a bit of empathetic cunning and manipulation.
©2013 M. E. Thomas (P)2013 Random House Audio
This book seems less like a nonfiction account of someone's life and more like a movie script. Listen to it high and then it will become more interesting. I like the book on the whole, but I don't believe the author is a sociopath.
Work in the tech industry. I like nonfiction.
Lots of contradictions. I think she thinks it would be cool to be a sociopath, rather than is one. A lot of what she describes is a result of living in the Mormon culture.
More narcissistic than anything else.
Unsure - don't know if she represents the author's voice.
3/5 of it is repeat.
This book was not what I expected, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I expected the author to tell stories of her sociopathic antics in essay format (examples of how she "ruined" people). She does include stories, but they are in no particular order and are mixed with her self indulgent delusions about herself and life in general. Her narcissistic delusions could be left out as they detract creditability. She frequently contradicts herself: she is capable of learning from her own mistakes, however she cannot use knifes because she was not able to teach herself to be careful with them; she frequently comments on her beauty, but also how plain she looks; she is a good lawyer, but she was fired from her law firm for under preforming, just to list some of the most obvious.
Mental disorders are one of my favorite topics, so a first person account was extremely intriguing to me. In all honesty, I would have completed this book regardless of how narcissistic the author was. I would recommend this book to anyone fascinated by mental disorders who want to learn more and can tolerate some nauseating self absorption in the process.
I don't doubt the author is a sociopath, and that many of her claims are perfectly reasonable. My issue with this book is the rambling and less than interesting way that the author goes about detailing her sociopathy.
I was intrigued by the portrayl of life through the eyes of somebody who likely sees the world very differently than I do. Tricky to do, and I should have been suspicious, but in any case, I was interested. Unfortunatley I don't believe the author pulls it off. I like the idea that a book like this one adds something to my world view - what I found instead, was hours of rambling, repetive and unininsigtful person recountings of life events that are told impersonally and in my opinion, poorly. That aside, by the end of the book, not only did I feel that the author had simply been repeating herself over and over again, but the random and unorganized way in which the account took place made it hard for me to feel as though any sort of coherent backbone of the book ever solidified. By the end, I don't feel that my worldview has changed or I am in any way a more enlightened person.
While I can't claim to like the author or relate to her, her alienness never made itself all that apparent to me. Maybe this was her intention all along, but in my opinion, it makes the enitre book seem a little unnecessary. And that aside, I don't really enjoy the idea that by the authors own reasoning, stated again and again in the pages of this book, aren't to make you understand sociopathy (by definition, she really doesn't care what you think), but simply to take your money. My advice: Spend it elsewhere.
The book was very disorganized with examples and thoughts in a stream that made little sense. Just when I thought something productive and interesting was about to be discussed, the subject changed. Sorry I bought it but am still interested in the topic.
Back to mysteries for a while. And some biography.
Nope. That's it.
I Loved the contradictions and internal disconnect -- I've rarely seen the concept of a person without empathy more clearly acted out. For someone to express that they are broken, abused and stunted while at the same time crowing that they are the apex and possibly an improved part of the human condition -- yes, that's these people at their most two dimensional. What I liked least was the lingering feeling of pity. The mood brought on by reading hung on after like a bad smell.
The concepts were overexplained and the book could have gotten in and out in a much shorter time.
Avid general reader with a fondness for British and Irish Writers and world history.
The 'author' has a fixation on being abnormal, but her 'diagnosis' is unlikely and rather pathetic. A drama queen, indeed, and self- aggrandizing as befits a very immature personality. If anything she says about herself is true, then she could have done better in terms of authoring a book.
The narrative is actually quite boring and the tale, itself is poorly organized. Glib quotes from various psychologists and psychiatrists. Equally glib injection of legal terms
She probably has a personality disorder but not the one she would like to have.. Efforts to shock do not make a sociopath.
A waste of time and not an iota of value to the study of sociopathy.
I think we all have a little sociopath in us!! especially when it comes to our children and love ones!! I don't believe there is one person who can say they would not do whatever it takes to protect their own!! In doing so some times you must look the other way ....
I was really excited about this book after hearing an interview with the author on NPR. As a practicing psychologist, I was eager to learn more about sociopathy, especially from the perspective of someone who copes with it. I could not have been more disappointed, however. I do not believe the author is sociopath; rather, she comes off as a typical, uninsightful, arrogant narcissist who lacks self-awareness.
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