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.
©2011 Patrick deWitt (P)2011 HarperCollins Publishers
“…gritty, as well as deadpan and often very comic…DeWitt has chosen a narrative voice so sharp and distinctive…it’s very narrowing of possibilities opens new doors in the imagination.” (New York Times Book Review)
“Weirdly funny, startlingly violent and steeped in sadness… It’s all rendered irresistible by Eli Sisters, who narrates with a mixture of melancholy and thoughtfulness.” (Washington Post)
“[T]here’s something cinematic about Mr. deWitt’s unadorned prose style, which at first made this reader do a double-take—can this be serious?—only to continue flicking the pages with pleasure.” (Wall Street Journal)
The story was a well developed one for as short as it was. The characters were interesting and the ending relatively satisfying.
The narration was excellent. Volume levels and clarity were some of the best I have heard on Audible. The characters were distinct and there personalities realized by the narrator.
Was a great little book killers and whores and blood and and all that cowboy stuff. Strangely endearing and full of humor￼
I was turned onto this book by Ben Fowlkes and Chad Dundas, two journalists with a podcast (CME, if you nasty).
I really enjoyed the story and characters but I felt the narration by Pruden really coloured my experience of the book. The book is first person narrative and Pruden's speech is slow and deliberate. Check the audio sample. It's somewhere between John Wayne and Tonto. And maybe Data from TNG... I'm uncertain Pruden can use contractions.
At first I thought this might be a character choice but having listened to samples on other Pruden narrations I know it isn't - this is just the way Pruden narrates. Slow. And deliberate.
It makes everything sound like either a simpleton is saying it or it's being addressed to a simpleton. Which colours the characters of a fictional story, especially when it's in first person narrative.
Early on in the book I was expecting there to be a reveal that the protagonist/narrator had been dropped on his head as a child but once I realised it wasn't a deliberate choice discussed with the author to make the main character sound simple my understanding of the story and characters was much clearer.
While there is a naivety to the main character he is not a simpleton and neither are the majority of the characters in the book, although Pruden voices them in that same slow, deliberate way.
I think the book would be a good read. It's a misleading listen.
I love it when I have no idea what's going to happen next.
Definitely. Simple, yet beautiful. Western in style, but covering timeless themes. Also perfectly narrated.
The brother of the narrator. He is a complex character... Not unrealistically villainous, or unrealistically heroic... But an authentic man.
I'm not a fan of the western genre usually, but there was something stoic and modern about it. The complicated story of two brothers who are different on so many levels, but still brothers in the end, is a story we can all relate to on some level. Believe the hype on this one!
I rarely re-listen to books, but this one deserves it. Great narration by John Pruden ! He captured the characters with his voice and intonation perfectly.
The narrator, Eli, is of course the best.
I haven't listened to him previously, but based on this, I am looking for more books narrated by him.
This is reminiscent of a Joe R. Lansdale story, similar flawed but sympathetic characters and a dry humor that I found appealing. Loved it !
I like oaters, but then I like good books of any genre. I have well over two thousand titles in my library and expect many more.
Strange book. The heroes are villans, and the tell is from their point of view. There is one brother who seems to have no conscience and one that has quite a bit of reservation about what they do. The story is basically following the Sisters brothers to California where they hope to kill a couple of guys and steal a formula for the Commodore, their beloved boss. This book had me hooked early. The conversations and philosophizing during the trip is mesmerizing, and even though these guys are cold blooded killers, you start to sympathize with the kinder one, and the kinder one is doing the tell. So you see everything from his viewpoint. This is not a normal shoot em up western as it is better. It is a journey and a story well told. It held my interest and I think you will agree if you get this book. Well worth the credit, so take a chance would be my recommendation.
Business Physicist and Astronomer
While I was not wowed by this book, I did enjoy it. The story is quirky and the wit dry as the high desert.
Some of it was rather predictable, some just not that interesting. But if you want a break from business books, self-improvement manuals or vampire novels (yawn), here you go. While not a page turner, it will keep you amused.
Recommend? Sure, I recommend it!
Reader and long-distance commuter.
This is an odd western, not traditional cowboy fare. It is the type of story that could become a Tarantino movie one day.
I think it will be a hit with a narrow slice of listeners, those who enjoy good writing but read/listen for more than entertainment. Those just seeking entertainment may be left cold.
Of course, the protagonist.
This is a Tarantino movie waiting to happen.
I would have given it 3.5 stars, if it were possible.
I love books.
Absolutely! It is an engaging story and wonderfully narrated.
I loved the "flowery" language. It completely set the mood and tone of the book in an effective way. It made the funny bits funnier and really helped me stay immersed in the story.
Eli. The duality of him was completely fascinating. He was loyal, and funny, and and thoughtful, and a killer.
I'd recommend this to anyone. Regardless of your genre preference, I think this is a story most people would enjoy.
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