We are accustomed to think of sociopaths as violent criminals, but in The Sociopath Next Door, Harvard psychologist Martha Stout reveals that a shocking 4 percent of ordinary people—one in twenty-five—has an often undetected mental disorder, the chief symptom of which is that that person possesses no conscience. He or she has no ability whatsoever to feel shame, guilt, or remorse.
In 2010, the bodies of four women—Megan, Maureen, Melissa and Amber—were found in an overgrown area of Long Island's Gilgo Beach. All had been escorts who utilized Craigslist to connect with clients. Rather than focusing on their professions, Robert Kolker delves into each woman's life, uncovering drugs, abusive childhoods and a plethora of other life-stunting complications.