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Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight
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Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight

2.99 of 5 stars 2.99  ·  rating details  ·  2,749 ratings  ·  582 reviews
The first memoir of its kind, Confessions of a Sociopath is an engrossing, highly captivating narrative of the author's life as a diagnosed sociopath.

She is a charismatic charmer, an ambitious self-promoter, and a cunning and calculating liar. She can induce you to invest in her financial schemes, vote for her causes, and even join her in bed. Like a real-life Lisbeth Sala
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Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 14th 2013 by Crown (first published January 1st 2013)
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Checkman
I did not purchase this book. A friend owns it and I read it last night. It's a fast read. While moderately interesting (at first) it rapidly becomes repetitive and tiresome. The author is basically bragging about her condition and telling us that she is superior to us.She's beautiful (so she claims), a sexual magnet (again so she claims), intelligent, ruthless, dangerous, blah,blah,blah,blah.

I'm not a mental health professional, but as a police officer of 13 years I've had many many contacts wi
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Simone Sinna
As a psychotherapist/health professional working with mental illness, this book fascinated me when I read excerpts in the newspaper and when I saw at in the airport bookshop, I grabbed it. A memoir, written under a pseudonym (though she invites you to find out who she is), it is highly unusual because psychopaths/sociopaths/ people with antisocial personality disorders are usually not insightful, do not think that they have a problem, just that they cause other people grief. I put these three di ...more
Joan Kite
Anything I write about this book is unfair.

I couldn't finish it.

Perhaps I will attempt this memoir another time (maybe it's me).

The anonymous writer (first problem) who boasts about a lack of feeling for others (second problem) has a hard time connecting to the reader (the big problem). She can't feel for others? Weird because I felt the same toward her.

Even attempts to pad her story with historical information and research could not save this book.

Not worth your time, IMHO.
Wendy
This wouldn't have been a likely read for me, except that incidentally I do know the author, and I was curious to see how she views herself through this lens (I had not been aware of her identification as a sociopath before). To the extent that I do know her - years in the same Mormon congregation, playing music and football together, ultimately following her down the law career path - I can affirm that more of the content is genuine than other reviewers might have surmised (and I can certainly ...more
Go Places
(E-copy received from NetGalley.)

I had hoped that this would be an interesting read after having read the excerpt in a magazine. However, the whole book was such a drag that it was a struggle to finish it. Sociopaths are supposed to be charming right? Well, M.E. Thomas didn't charm me at all. The book was mostly composed of repetitive anecdotes about how she attempted to "ruin" other people's lives with her trademark sociopathic manipulations. It got me rolling my eyes because you can just tell
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Angela Risner
Wow, I guess I am in the minority here, but I actually liked the book. Here's why:

1. It was on a subject in which I am interested. I like books by J.A. Konrath, Karin Slaughter, etc, so a book written by a sociopath would fall in line.

2. It entertained me. I thought that the author seemed very straightforward with her assessment of herself and other sociopaths.

Does it surprise me that sociopaths are narcissistic? That they manipulate? That some are murderers while others are functioning member
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Frishawn Rasheed
This book is written for those readers who, like myself are fascinated with the inner workings of the human psyche. Part clinical analysis, part honest self discoveries laid bare; M. E. Thomas's story is as thought provoking as it is frightening.
She shows how easy it is to be a thing which is at it's core abnormal, and what can be, given the right circumstances...dangerous.
She goes further still,using incidences from her own life to illustrate how our "results driven, success at all costs societ
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Candace Petersen Martineau
I typically love memoirs, but this narrator was insufferable. The ego and self-admitted overexaggerations and distance from reality may be an accurate look into the mind of a sociopath, but it is not a pleasant place to spend time. The frequent and repetitive assurances to the reader that she is more attractive, charming, and intelligent than they are got dull quickly. Yes, some studies and literature indicate that some portion of our population are drawn to the peculiarities of the sociopath. B ...more
Amanda Patterson
‘This book is a work of memoir. It is true according to my best recollections; however, in addition to the inevitable flaws of memory, this story is told through the lens of how I see the world, including my megalomania, single-minded focus and a lack of understanding about the inner worlds of others.’

The book is readable, as charming and seductive as the sociopath who is writing it. M.E. Thomas made me question so many things as she showed me her world. I even questioned whether she was being t
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Ian
This book is getting bashed across the internet and in user ratings here because they find the author irritating, self-absorbed, narcisstic, or otherwise unpleasant. If this is a disappointment to readers, I suggest they read the titles of the books they purchase more carefully before beginning to read.

This book does in fact provide an extremely incisive look into the mind of sociopath in a throughly engaging and well-written narrative. While much of the book is troubling ... particularly realiz
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Stacie
Sep 03, 2013 Stacie added it
Shelves: gave-up, netgalley
I made it about 34% in when I just decided I didn't care enough to even attempt to finish this book. All I heard in my head while reading was blah blah blah blah blah.
Melissa Lee-tammeus
Okay, how do I begin? First, without truly knowing who this person is, as she remains anonymous, I really have no way of knowing if this is even true. I am incredibly skeptical, to say the least. The scientist in me wanted to know all the references to these studies she kept writing about because she refers to so many with very little frame of reference. Every once in awhile, she will drop a doctor's name, or a prestigious school name to make it all more authentic, I think. Maybe she is a sociop ...more
Vegantrav
M.E. Thomas (a pseudonym) is a self-confessed sociopath, and she has written this memoir with the goal of educating the public about what it's really like to be a sociopath. Thomas tells us that she writes under a pseudonym because she fears that were she outed as a sociopath, it could hurt her professional career (she is a professor of law) and adversely affect some of her personal relationships.

I was somewhat disappointed in this book: it's poorly written, and it fails to provide a detailed po
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Jessa
Being a psychology and english major has some serious advantages, especially when it comes to reading. So what better book is there to read than a book about a Sociopath that is actually decently written?

M.E. Thomas is a female sociopath and this book really looks at different aspects of her life and how she navigates life as a sociopath. We quickly learn there is a cultural difference between psychopaths and sociopaths. Sociopaths actually can follow the rules and are rarely violent. They are c
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Jeff Hedberg
I'm not sure how this became a book. I consider myself a terrible writer, however, I enjoy reading interesting books. I'd never think I could actually write a book, so I try not to be too critical - but this book really surprised me.

The subject of it interested me - a Mormon woman who considers herself a Sociopath, and self describes herself as someone we would all find attractive, and charming. It seems like a paradox, and might be interesting to learn more about.

I didn't quite make it half wa
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Helen
Many sociopaths are supposedly good at 'faking' their way through life.

However, it seems they're not all capable of faking decent writing.
I thought this would provide an illuminating peek inside the head of someone who thinks differently and experiences the world in a way alien and unfamiliar to me. But this account was so contradictory, the author so profoundly unlikeable (her 'charm' powers don't transfer to paper)and so repetitively dull I had to give up half-way through.
If this is an area of
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Kerry
I wanted to see how they felt (or didn't feel) about the world around them, and the struggles they faced learning to fake their way thru, and that not all sociopaths were violent criminals, or even bad people. But, apparently, she has no struggles, and is violent prone, and isn't a very nice person...at all.

All she talked about was what a charming, brilliant (way smarter than anyone else in the whole world), attractive, funny, predator she is. And how sociopaths toy with us mere mortals for spo
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Ashley Protagonist
Whether Thomas is likeable or not, whether she is a reliable narrator or not, this was a good walkthrough of the inside of a person whose behavior is regulated by self-interest without a veneer of sentimental plausible deniability to protect her from her own motivations.

I enjoyed her speculation as to the best way to nurture children with her predispositions, including her desire for more people like her to have had positive EMPATH role models. Perhaps things would be easier for everyone if mor
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Ashley
I ended up skimming through the book skipping entire sections, because it was so badly written. Please don't spend money on this. I got it from the library so I am not insane with regret. She does morally questionable things, has morally questionable thoughts (as everyone does). She brags on herself for it. Which most people don't. She comes off as mostly making crap up or really exaggerating facts to give her supposed condition the all inclusive label "sociopath". Her life isn't all that intere ...more
Jo Lewin
I hated every second of this book but couldn't put it down. Badly written, rambling and uncohesive. But like a train wreck I couldn't look away from this woman's disgusting personality.
Jonny99
Or "How to Craft a Lifestyle from Daddy Issues" The basic dilemma facing readers of "M. E.'s" - get it? M E?, I see what you did there - involves reading "confessions" of someone who proudly purports to be a genius at self-aggrandizing deceptions. So, how much, should the reader of this very extended Walt Whitman "I Sing of Me" monologue take as reality? The author claims to be a very wealthy and successful female (but specifically says she doesn't identify as female)law professor. She - let's t ...more
Librariasaurus
I want my money back.
I found this book to be utterly ludicrous. I have never read anything so repetitive and self-glorifying. The only message I get from it is that she's a sociopath and we should accept her. She opens the book by saying she's a non-violent sociopath, yet even before the chapters begin, IN THE INTRODUCTION she goes into detail about killing a baby possum. And then about wanting to kill a metro worker who told her not to use a broken escalator. And then about strangling her love
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Rebecca
While Thomas had a fairly tragic childhood (self-absorbed, neglectful parents with bouts of verbal and physical abuse), this is actually fairly low drama for what it is. Thomas is a fairly functional sociopath--she has a good career, she has friends, she does seem to care about her siblings and their children, she hasn't murdered anyone or really committed any crimes at all. She points out that she's not stupid--she figured out relatively early on that, even if she doesn't feel guilty, generally ...more
Stephanie
I don't know if I can say I enjoyed this book.

The author, who has chosen to use a pseudonym, is a diagnosed sociopath who has decided to step out of the closet. She started a blog, and then a forum for sociopaths, which led to this book deal.

The book is well written, for what it is. It could have done with some heavy editing, because some sections do tend to get repetitive (though one wonders how much control Thomas would have actually elected to hand over to an editor - I can't imagine much).

T
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Riya
Ok guys, time to be honest: what do you think of when you hear the word "sociopath"?

Do you picture something like this:


Who else but Hannibal Lecter?

or maybe, perhaps this:

[image error]
The infamous Ukrainian serial killer: Andrei Chikatilo

Surely, an image like this wouldn't pop into your mind . . . or would it?



If you consider yourself to be smarter than the average bear, you will most likely agree with the fact that there are many individuals (estimates are as high as one in twenty-five people) t
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Susan
Meh. Definitely written in the tone of a sociopath. :)
Is it for real ? That is the only unanswered question. It felt a bit like a research project in progress more than an actual memoir. A fascinating subject but the author finds herself much more fascinating than the book actually ever becomes. I can't tell if she is putting us on or is , in actuality, a certified sociopath who just cannot spin a good enough yarn to convince the reader to take the bait .
Andrea McDowell
Where do I even begin.

Well, how about with this:

"This sort of behavior may seem uncouth, but is it really immoral? Prichard's disgust with sociopaths for being immoral seems largely unwarranted unless you ascribe to his particular brand of morality. Was I really in the wrong by temporarily taking my neighbor's bike? Only if you think that violation of the personal property of others is immoral. Even the law recognizes that this is not always the case: If you're stranded in a snowstorm, it would
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Monika
Confessions of a Sociopath was a difficult read, in a way. It wasn't the content or the writing style as much as the tone, which felt a little odd, and at times, disconcerting. It was often cold and very pretentious. After a while, it really grated on my nerves. By the final few chapters, I would catch myself skimming the text and have to reread large portions. I think it would have been wiser of me to take the book in smaller doses, to break it up a bit.

But... the content itself was pretty fasc
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☺Trish
Self-diagnosis of a serious personality disorder is probably not such a good idea, unless the person is dissatisfied with how their life is going and is sincerely interested in seeking professional help in an attempt to improve their relationships with family, friends, and co-workers (then again, most true sociopaths could probably care less about their relationships with others or how their behavior affects others). Otherwise, it seems rather pointless, just an exercise in rationalizing or excu ...more
Amy
Sep 19, 2014 Amy rated it 1 of 5 stars
Shelves: gave-up
I could only make it through half of this book and cannot read anymore. The author is so self-righteous and repeats herself numerous times which gets annoying within about 20 pages. I couldn’t stand to read about her outrageous ego and blatant animal cruelty. There was also a nagging feeling that this “sociopath” is a fake. The story jumps around, contradicting itself. If she were so organized and perfect, one would think her planning of how to write would be as well. It shows that she has had a ...more
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“When you grow up as a girl, it is like there are faint chalk lines traced approximately three inches around your entire body at all times, drawn by society and often religion and family and particularly other women, who somehow feel invested in how you behave, as if your actions reflect directly on all womanhood.” 84 likes
“I'm an 'intelligent' sociopath. I don't have problems with drugs, I don't commit crimes, I don't take pleasure in hurting people, and I don't typically have relationship problems. I do have a complete lack of empathy. But I consider that an advantage, most of the time. Do I know the difference between right and wrong, and do I want to be good? Sure. ... A peaceful and orderly world is a more comfortable world for me to live in. So do I avoid breaking the law because it's 'right'? No, I avoid breaking the law because it makes sense.” 22 likes
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