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The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt

November 26, 2011

This is the story of Eli and Charlie Sisters, guns for hire contracted to locate and kill a gold prospector named Herman Kermit Worm. The book takes place during the California Gold Rush and follows the brothers through a series of dark, comical and unexpected episodes on their search. Along the way, Eli, the narrator, begins to wrestle with his profession.

The Sisters Brothers is a Gothic Western comedy, like a Cormac McCarthy with belly laughs. It’s a great read that moves like popular fiction but is poetic and full of wit and character. It touches on some larger themes about the nature of humanity, greed and purpose, but the strength is in the language and quirkiness of the characters. My only criticism is that the end felt a bit anticlimactic, but that might be because the central part of the novel is so highly entertaining.


One Comment leave one →
  1. December 20, 2011 3:41 am

    I agree about the anticlimax. Also, I felt the novel wrapped up a little too quickly.
    Still, I really enjoyed this book. Usually, award winning novels are chosen because they challenge the reader (but they aren’t very fun to read). This book received so much attention because it’s compelling and intelligent.

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