The Sisters Brothers
By Patrick DeWitt
Charlie and Eli Sisters, are bad, bad guys. You could live a long time and never meet such a bad pair.
They are killers and I’m embarrassed to say I really enjoyed this book. How can it be a funny western when they kill so casually?
It’s fair to say that Eli isn’t quite as bad as Charlie, because occasionally he thinks that it would be nice to own a little general store, and live in a more normal way. Eli and Charlie are not equals, you can tell, because Eli’s horse is named “Tub,” a swayback animal with little spunk and Charlie’s horse is “Nimble,” a different animal altogether.
The two brothers are on their way to California from Oregon to fulfill a contract for “The Commodore,” who has money enough to buy a couple of killers, and wants a certain Mr Herman Kermit Warm, dead.
This is no casual romp across the country with a quick neat killing; the first adventure for Eli is a bite from a venomous spider (on the big toe) and an impacted tooth. The latter extracted by a dentist who learned everything by correspondence. Before the treatment is complete Charlie takes by force some of the Dentist’s painkilling medicine. He’s sure he can use it in his line of work.
Every adventure these boys have leaves someone dead.
Charlie has a very short fuse, come by naturally, as his father was a brute and was, perhaps, Charlie’s first victim.