This may be one of the stranger "serious", award-winning books I've read. I know many people claim similarity to Blood Meridian and True Grit, but it'...moreThis may be one of the stranger "serious", award-winning books I've read. I know many people claim similarity to Blood Meridian and True Grit, but it's almost like deWitt is making fun of the stereotypical-ness of this Western scenario.
The story hones in on Charlie and Eli Sisters (who are obviously brothers) and their plot to assassinate a Mr. Warm for the Commodore. While they are feared and clearly try to display a lack of empathy, due to their ruthlessness and aptitude for killing; Eli seems to actually be a little bit compassionate; even towards his burdensome horse, Tub. Charlie, on the other hand, appears to be a cold-hearted drunkard, but even cracks in his beastly personality make an appearance every once in awhile.
If the reader goes in expecting an epic western story out of this very short and simple novel, they will be disappointed, because there isn't one. It's certainly hilarious and has its quirks, but it's almost like drowning in the misfortunes and "ups" and downs of these two brothers.
It eventually leads to their proposed "last job", which goes horribly wrong in some hilarious and unfortunate ways.
Overall, it was a well-written story, with some much-needed humour that I find nationally acclaimed novels are lacking these days. It's a break from my more depressing reads of this year. Although not without it's own depressing message (to me anyway): being an assassin during the California gold rush (1850s) sucks ass.(less)
I cannot hate this book, as much as I was confused by it and tried to really, really love it. Firstly, it was just the right amount of dark for me; an...moreI cannot hate this book, as much as I was confused by it and tried to really, really love it. Firstly, it was just the right amount of dark for me; and just the right amount of sacrifice and survival, but alas, it didn't really speak to me.
This book is VERY well written and has a great story too (including all those little tales added at the very end of each chapter), but I found myself itching to finish and not because I was captivated.
This is one of those absolutely hate or absolutely love books. Although I have chosen to be indifferent, it is only because I cannot fairly give this a rating (good or bad) because it just didn't work for me.
That being said, I highly recommend it for those who like soft urban fantasy/dystopian reads. :)(less)