Brian's Reviews > The Sisters Brothers

The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt
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's review
Apr 21, 2012

it was amazing
bookshelves: favorites, novels

Too many people review westerns as if the word "revisionist" was a dirty word, or as if it were a scavenger hunt for anachronisms.* I think a good story trumps both of these concerns, and that's what DeWitt has written here.

Charlie and Eli Sisters are feared assassins in Oregon Territory in 1851. Their boss sends them on a mission to Gold Rush California to kill a prospector, no questions asked. As they make their way through the Oregon desert and over the Shasta pass, Eli's conscience begins to awaken and he starts to question the arc of his life. The story is told in Eli's surprisingly educated (for an assassin) voice, as he begins to picture a better life while helping his alcoholic brother acquire bottles of morphine to treat his hangovers.

The readability of this one is off the charts. I finished it in less than a day, which for a book of its size is astonishing. I don't think any book since Douglas Adams has pulled me along so quickly.

*I found one anachronism in The Sisters Brothers, but it didn't bother me. Eli mentions a tuxedo, when as far as I can tell no such thing existed in 1851.

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Reading Progress

April 21, 2012 – Started Reading
April 21, 2012 – Shelved
April 21, 2012 –
April 21, 2012 –
April 21, 2012 – Finished Reading
July 17, 2012 – Shelved as: favorites
September 9, 2012 – Shelved as: novels

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