Picador £8.99 (291pp) £8.54 from the Independent Bookshop: 08430 600 030
The Psychopath Test, By Jon Ronson
Arifa Akbar is literary editor of The Independent and i newspapers. She has worked at The Independent since 2001 as a news reporter and arts correspondent before joining the books desk in 2009. She was a judge for the Orwell Prize for books, 2013, and is currently a judge of the Fiction Uncovered Prize 2014, and the Independent Scholastic New Children's Prize 2014.
Friday 06 January 2012
Continuing in his quirky vein of Gonzo journalism, Ronson exchanges the study of US military probes into the paranormal (The Men Who Stare at Goats) for a study of psychopathy which interrogates not just what it means to be a psychopath but also the psychiatric professionals who measure the term and the sliding scale of psychopathy in society.
Ronson's usual levity and self-deprecating wit sits alongside his serious-minded absorption. His journey is weird, fearless, original and hugely gripping, taking him from Scientology to Broadmoor to a code-cracking quest in Sweden.
The ground shifts, the grey area expands and the neat, complacent distinctions between sanity, eccentricity and psychopathy are left a little more unhinged.
There’s revolution in the air, but one lady’s not for turningTV
Robin Thicke admits he didn't write 'Blurred Lines'music
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 All Blacks Aaron Cruden misses New Zealand flight after drinking session, has brilliant excuse
- 2 Kim Kardashian 'nude photos' leaked on 4chan weeks after Jennifer Lawrence scandal
- 3 'F*ck it, I quit': TV reporter Charlo Greene quits live on air in spectacular fashion
- 4 Alicia Keys leaks nude photo 'to create a kinder and more peaceful world'
- 5 Clothes store Joy angers mental health campaigners with Twitter exchange on bipolar disorders
Scotland could still declare independence – even without referendum, says Alex Salmond
Scottish referendum results: Cross-party consensus collapses amid Tory-Labour spat on the 'English question'
Hilary Mantel 'should be investigated by police' over Margaret Thatcher assassination story, says Lord Bell
Scottish independence: David Cameron is becoming the 'George Bush of Britain'
Plebgate MP Andrew Mitchell called officer a 'little s**t', claim court documents 'exposing ex-Chief Whip's 'record of abusing police'
Archbishop of Canterbury admits doubts about existence of God