2012 Morning News Tournament of Books Winner
This entertaining and heartbreaking story is told by a fabulous narrator, Eli Sisters. Eli and his brother Charlie are hired killers in late 19th-century Oregon and California, and this is the tale of their final job. Recommended By Doug C., Powells.com
Where to start with this strange little book? The Sisters brothers are a pair of killers-for-hire: Charlie, the hard-boiled pragmatist of the pair; Eli, the reluctant, sensitive softy. Assigned their next hit, the pair begins a long and winding journey which leads them in a wildly atypical direction: they befriend their "hit" and events diverge from the normal sordid path. Packed with quirky, dark humor and razor-sharp character studies, The Sisters Brothers presents an unusual treat: a pair of killers with whom you cannot help but sympathize. Just embrace the peculiarity here. Offbeat, idiosyncratic, and odd, this is one novel you won't soon forget. Recommended By Dianah H., Powells.com
Synopses & Reviews
Hermann Kermit Warm is going to die. The enigmatic and powerful man known only as the Commodore has ordered it, and his henchmen, Eli and Charlie Sisters, will make sure of it. Though Eli doesn't share his brother's appetite for whiskey and killing, he's never known anything else. But their prey isn't an easy mark, and on the road from Oregon City to Warm's gold-mining claim outside Sacramento, Eli begins to question what he does for a living and whom he does it for.
With The Sisters Brothers, Patrick deWitt pays homage to the classic Western, transforming it into an unforgettable comic tour de force. Filled with a remarkable cast of characters losers, cheaters, and ne'er-do-wells from all stripes of life and told by a complex and compelling narrator, it is a violent, lustful odyssey through the underworld of the 1850s frontier that beautifully captures the humor, melancholy, and grit of the Old West and two brothers bound by blood, violence, and love.
"Two men in the employ of a man known as the Commodore have been sent to California to kill a prospector.
'It turns out, and I don't know why this is, and have at times wished it were not so, but yes -- we had or have an aptitude for killing,' Eli Sisters says, as he explains how he and his brother Charlie found their vocation, for which they are feared far and wide.
These are the title characters in Portland writer Patrick deWitt's new novel, The Sisters Brothers
, set in Gold Rush-era 1850s." J. David Santen Jr., The Oregonian
(Read the entire Oregonian review
About the Author
Patrick deWitt is the author of the critically acclaimed Ablutions: Notes for a Novel. Born in British Columbia, he has also lived in California, Washington, and Oregon, where he currently resides with his wife and son.