This is the first non fiction book that I’ve read in a while, and my relationship to it is different from fiction. Certainly I absorb the information in a different way, and I find that I’m inspired or intrigued by the ideas that the world throws up.
The book talks about what we do and do not know about the psychopath. The science is presented in an engaging way, peppered with anecdotes and examples of how we come across these types of people.
More importantly, that we have these attributes within ourselves. We fear certain things as an act of projection, to reject that which is within ourselves is how we justify some of the things that we do. Dutton does not romanticize these outliers, but he provides these horrors with some context.
When he begins to explore these ideas in more pragmatic detail, the book almost veers into self help therapy, blessedly avoiding the touchy feely in favour of an honest and pragmatic set of tools that you might have to elaborate upon in polite company.
Until you’ve charmed them to the point that it doesn’t matter. It was a fascinating and involving book that I ploughed through with gusto and made notes upon all sorts of chapters. I intend to have a copy of this for the bookshelf because it demands contemplation and study.