The Psychopath Test - Jon Ronson

The Psychopath Test

By Jon Ronson

  • Release Date: 2011-05-12
  • Genre: Social Science
Score: 4
From 1,234 Ratings


In this madcap journey, a bestselling journalist investigates psychopaths and the industry of doctors, scientists, and everyone else who studies them.

The Psychopath Test is a fascinating journey through the minds of madness. Jon Ronson's exploration of a potential hoax being played on the world's top neurologists takes him, unexpectedly, into the heart of the madness industry. An influential psychologist who is convinced that many important CEOs and politicians are, in fact, psychopaths teaches Ronson how to spot these high-flying individuals by looking out for little telltale verbal and nonverbal clues. And so Ronson, armed with his new psychopath-spotting abilities, enters the corridors of power. He spends time with a death-squad leader institutionalized for mortgage fraud in Coxsackie, New York; a legendary CEO whose psychopathy has been speculated about in the press; and a patient in an asylum for the criminally insane who insists he's sane and certainly not a psychopath.

Ronson not only solves the mystery of the hoax but also discovers, disturbingly, that sometimes the personalities at the helm of the madness industry are, with their drives and obsessions, as mad in their own way as those they study. And that relatively ordinary people are, more and more, defined by their maddest edges.


  • Fun and playful book on an extreme topic

    By Mr Machdes
    A clever and ironic journey into the world of psychopathy and the doctors who treat them. Like his other books, this one is a wonderful and mysterious story, all based on interviews and research with interesting people. I find his style of writing even more enjoyable than his Canadian alter ego, Malcolm Gladwell. If you like clever stories, about eccentric people you will love this book.
  • Fun read

    By ineedareed
    I really enjoyed the twists and turns this book presented. I am left with some questions to ponder about sanity. This is an excellent read.
  • Could not put down!

    By Keeping it real 10000
    Absolutely fascinating read...
  • It was just OK

    By DerekA911
    Starts off strong with some interesting insight into the world of psychopathy, but then sort of transforms half way through into a book you wouldn't expect from reading the synopsis (or the first half, for that matter). Almost as if the author discovered that he couldn't complete the book he intended to write, but nonetheless had half a book that needed an ending. All in all it was interesting, if not well assembled.
  • John Ronson is amazing

    By turg2323
    I loved this book and his previous two. This is what "Gonzo Journalism" would have been if Hunter Thompson were a better, more interesting, more coherent writer and had less concern for proving his macho-ness. Jon Ronson is the best non-fiction writer I've ever read, and I've read a lot of biography and non-fiction. I eagerly await his next book.
  • Must read

    By Well done.
    Some of the finest investigative journalism I've experienced, and put in a more than enjoyable format. Well done.
  • The Psychopath Test

    By Diana1947
    Very informative and interesting. Well worth the time spent to read it.
  • Great read

    By Stupid wild
    Bought this book a few months back and never started reading until a few days ago. As soon as I got a few chapters into this book it became impossible to put down. Already recommended this book to all my friends.
  • Great Read

    By retrojusticeb
    This book was very introspective,funny,sad and more. I felt like I was Listening to a good friend telling my a story. I would highly recommend giving this book a read. I only wish it was longer... =D
  • A Good Read

    By TrulyJadelia
    I've been a student of people most of my life. You know, wondering why some people act one way during an event of any kind versus why others act differently...the good and the bad. This book provides not only good information on the characteristics of what very simply is a person skilled in covert manipulation but also shares that there is danger to be found when we label people based on characteristics that they exhibit. It is definitely food for thought and as a result of sharing the book with another, good discussions have occurred. I'd say it's worth the money and time. Definitely.