Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight” as Want to Read:
Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

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

3.21  ·  Rating details ·  13,066 ratings  ·  1,711 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
Hardcover, 320 pages
Published May 14th 2013 by Crown (first published 2013)
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 Confessions of a Sociopath, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Maurice Lightbourne This is an amaZing Read!!! For Those Lost In this world it justifies your curiosity don't you agree?…moreThis is an amaZing Read!!! For Those Lost In this world it justifies your curiosity don't you agree?(less)

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 3.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  13,066 ratings  ·  1,711 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight
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
Aug 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
Kelly (and the Book Boar)
Find all of my reviews at:

. . . And the award for Worst Book I’ve Read So Far This Year goes to Confessions of a Sociopath!!!!!

Commercial Photography

Short notice. Just go with it.

According to the blurb this was supposed to be an “engrossing, highly captivating narrative of the author’s life as a diagnosed sociopath” . . .

Commercial Photography

What it was instead was . . . .

Commercial Photography

First of all, the author lived as a “self-diagnosed” sociopath for years before ever seeing an actual doctor about it. I
Simone Sinna
Jun 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
Petra X karma should have given me a Ferrari
Mar 29, 2015 rated it did not like it
Recommended to Petra X karma should have given me a Ferrari by: jody julian
Update 4
I said I wasn't going to do any more updates but I'm now feeling outraged by the way the author is treating us stupid just so she can prove her point. She says that Kings College (London) researchers have found that the brains of imprisoned criminal psychopaths "show distinctly less grey matter in the areas of the brain important for understanding the emotions of others." These studies indicate that sociopathic brains do not respond emotionally to words like death, rape and cancer in th
Jul 04, 2013 rated it liked it
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
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
"The reality is that I have nothing of what people refer to as a conscience or remorse."

Confessions of a Sociopath is an astonishing memoir of a young woman with the pseudonym M.E. Thomas who realised at a young age that she was different from her peers.

"I've always known that my heart is a little blacker and colder than most people's. Maybe that's why it's so tempting to try to break other people's."

Thomas believes she had a decent upbringing but reading about her narcissistic father an
May 23, 2013 rated it did not like it
Shelves: non-fiction
(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
Candace Petersen Martineau
Jul 29, 2013 rated it did not like it
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
Angela Risner
Jul 01, 2013 rated it liked it
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
WTF Are You Reading?
Mar 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was ok
I might have tossed his book aside had it not been my bookclubs pick. In saying that there’s no doubt sociopaths make for an interesting character study except this was way too self indulgent and awful to fully enjoy what I learned from it. There’s enough information to chew on as it’s backed up with adequate research to make it moderately interesting, but unless you have a particular keen interest in sociopathy or want to self diagnose (ha) then I’d steer clear of it.
Jun 07, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
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
Emma Johansson
May 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
I loved loved loooved it! Will be making a review for this on YouTube (probably).
It was a bit hard to get into, but after siting down for a while and really paying attention to what I was reading, it got better and better. I read at home, I read in the car, at school, while walking, while waiting, on the plane, at the restaurant... I couldn't stay awayyyy hehe;) I also love the cover.
Jo Lewin
Apr 01, 2013 rated it it was ok
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. ...more
Siena Mirabella
May 31, 2017 rated it liked it
3.75 to be oh so honest
Jul 03, 2013 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology, memoir
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
Amanda Patterson
Apr 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
‘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
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 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
Melissa Lee-Tammeus
Aug 23, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: borrowed
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
May 27, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: cultural-studies
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
I didn't expect this to be so dull and monotonous. As a criminology and psychology student, almost nothing in this book was new for me, and I can't imagine it's big news for anyone with some education and interest in the field of human behaviour. As any other reader, because of the pseudonym of the author and the apparent "secrecy" held throughout the book concerning their identity, I can't be sure if this is truth, but packaged as fiction, or if this is fiction, but packaged as truth. Nonethele ...more
Jun 05, 2013 rated it it was ok
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
Ashley Protagonist
Nov 06, 2013 rated it really liked it
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
May 30, 2015 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book scares me. The unknown author M.E. Thomas scares me. Sociopaths now really scare me.

Sociopaths are described as:

Pathological liars
Contemptuous of those who seek to understand them
Perceiving nothing is wrong with them
Seeking out situations where their tyrannical behavior will be tolerated, condoned, or admired
Exercising despotic control over every aspect of the victim's life
Having an emotional need to justify their crimes and therefore n
Sep 15, 2017 rated it liked it
Three stars. (Really only 2 1/2.) Interesting in the beginning but it badly needs a first rate editor. Unfortunately, it is complete hot mess about half way through and I wonder what happened.
Julia Sapphire
Aug 01, 2017 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2017, mental-illness

I just can't. I can't finish this.
I was gonna make myself pull through but this book infuriates me.
Lemme just say I made it to like page 30 and than started skimming because I couldn't deal with it anymore.

Even reading JUST 30 pages I went on a rant on my bookstagram because it just ticked me off.

Now I love psychology and really want to explore it more, so I was excited for this. I had high hopes and it sounded really promising.

My problems...lets go...

I get many sociopaths ten
Jun 06, 2017 rated it liked it
3.5 ⭐️
I enjoyed learning that i might be considered a sociopath. It was a fun and interesting read and hope to reread it again in the future.
Ghoul Von Horror
Oct 29, 2020 rated it did not like it
Release Date: May 14th, 2013
Genre: Memoir
Rating: 🎃1.0

About the book: 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 Salander, she has her own system of ethics, and like Dexter, she thrives on bending and occasionally breaking the rules. She is a diagnosed, high-functioning, noncriminal sociopath, and t
✟Roxanne✟(Death by Book Avalanche) ☠
*This review contains possible spoilers as I will be using quotes*

I thought I would mention that I am rating my enjoyment of this book which is 2 stars; if I was to rate the personality of the author I would be giving it minus stars.
This book made me feel very uncomfortable in places and so I could not give this a higher rating because I did not enjoy it, I found it interesting but not enjoyable.

I was only a few pages in when I came across intentional animal cruelty where this horrible woman att
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
topics  posts  views  last activity   
UCAS English 10 H...: April Reading Assignment 1 3 Apr 15, 2018 01:30PM  
Why be Anonymous? 8 76 Dec 08, 2015 09:09AM  
Interview with the author 1 63 Apr 08, 2015 08:11AM  
Huntsville-Madiso...: Staff Pick - Confessions of a Sociopath: A Life Spent Hiding in Plain Sight by M.E. Thomas 1 40 May 30, 2013 10:07AM  

Readers also enjoyed

  • The Psychopath Test: A Journey Through the Madness Industry
  • The Sociopath Next Door
  • The Psychopath Inside: A Neuroscientist's Personal Journey into the Dark Side of the Brain
  • Outsmarting the Sociopath Next Door: How to Protect Yourself Against a Ruthless Manipulator
  • Without Conscience: The Disturbing World of the Psychopaths Among Us
  • Talking with Psychopaths and Savages: A Journey into the Evil Mind
  • The Mask of Sanity
  • The Psychopath Whisperer: The Science of Those Without Conscience
  • Opening to Grief: Finding Your Way from Loss to Peace
  • Psychopath Free: Recovering from Emotionally Abusive Relationships With Narcissists, Sociopaths, and Other Toxic People
  • The Dark Side of the Mind: True Stories from My Life as a Forensic Psychologist
  • The Skeleton Cupboard: Stories From a Clinical Psychologist
  • Talking With Psychopaths and Savages: Beyond Evil
  • The Rise and Fall of Soviet Communism: A History of 20th-Century Russia
  • The INFP Book: The Perks, Challenges, and Self-Discovery of an INFP
  • Taboo: The Hidden Culture of Red Light Area
  • Rethinking Narcissism: The Secret to Recognizing and Coping with Narcissists
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders DSM-IV-TR
See similar books…
See top shelves…

Related Articles

Juneteenth, observed on June 19th each year, is an American holiday commemorating the day in 1865 when the last enslaved people in Galveston,...
139 likes · 19 comments
“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.” 221 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.” 78 likes
More quotes…