Quick Book Review: The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt

The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt

A book about the American Wild West? Killers on their horses following the gold trail to California? You’ve got to be kidding!

Even so, I loved this book. The story takes place in 1851. It’s about two brothers, Eli and Charlie Sisters, who are travelling from Oregon to California on a job. They work for The Commodore, their Oregon boss, who has instructed them to track down one Herman Kermit Warm, who needs to be killed. Why, they don’t know and it’s not important, either.

So they travel on horseback and have all kinds of adventures on the way. They don’t shrink back from killing people as necessary (or even when not) although Eli is not so keen on killing as Charlie. During the trip, Eli starts to wonder whether he really wants to continue working for The Commodore. He promises himself that this will be his last job.

Although I don’t like gratuitous killing, I was very entertained by this book. Eli was really quite a sweetie, a sensible guy. He suffered from being too fat and tried to work on it, which the people around him couldn’t understand. Eat less than you want? What?

Charlie was the leader of the two brother, but one with a big fault: he was too keen on liquor and could not always get out of bed the day after a drinking night. This, and other events, delayed their journey a lot.

It was fun how they (Eli especially) ended up using the newest inventions (like a toothbrush, or dental anaesthetics). They also used the most up-to-date method looking for gold, with good and bad results.

The way this book is written is so entertaining. Still if these things really happened to you, you would not be laughing! 🙂

Rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars

Number of pages: 290

First published: 2011

I got this book: from the library, for my Reading Around the USA in 90 days challenge (Oregon and California)

Genre: historical fiction

Have you read this book?

Did you enjoy it?


About Leeswammes
I'm owner and editor at bookhelpline.com. In my free time, I read and review books on my two blogs, Leeswammes' Blog and De Boekblogger.

28 Responses to Quick Book Review: The Sisters Brothers by Patrick deWitt

  1. JoV says:

    I have this book on my shelf. Looks really interesting I’m glad you like it!

  2. Book Nympho says:

    I loved this book as well! I’m glad you got to read it and that you enjoyed it. I agree, the story does sound a little strange but once you start reading, it’s so funny and fun to read that you end up enjoying it. I hope to discover many more books like this!

  3. Nadine Nys says:

    I couldn’t imagine I would ever buy this book, although I only read good things about it. But you did it again, Judith. It still isn’t number 1 on my whishlist, but it is now definitely on the list.

  4. Chinoiseries says:

    I’m not so sure about Westerns, but this does sound like a non-traditional one. A lot of people seem to like it, so I will have to read it sooner or later, to satisfy my curiosity 🙂

  5. I really enjoyed this book, and I couldn’t imagine that I would before I started. Eli is such a great character — sympathetic, humorous. Glad you enjoyed it!

  6. Thank you for the great review. I knew very little about this book, but it sounds like a fantastic read. I will take your suggestion on this one and give it a try.

  7. Shan says:

    I didn’t think I would be that interested in this book but I read it as it was nominated for our Giller Prize as well as won a couple other prestigious Canadian prizes. I loved it! I’m so glad I didn’t talk myself out of reading it due to the genre.

  8. Adriana says:

    Ok, this book is not what I would normally read but after so many good reviews I think it has gained a place in my 2012 TBR.

  9. cbjamess says:

    I’ve not read that it was so funny before your review. I think I will get around to reading it, eventually. I love the cover art, too.

  10. I was surprised by how much I liked this book. The writing was great and it was just quirky. I never did get to like either of the main characters much, but it didn’t matter because I ended up enjoying the story.

    • Leeswammes says:

      Susan, yes, I was surprised too! I also wasn’t too bothered with the main characters (although Eli was funny) but I loved the story.

  11. Trish says:

    This actually sounds like something I’d really enjoy! Not so much the violence but I LOVE western themed books. Cormac McCarthy is one of my favorite authors, though he might be a little darker than this one. Sounds like it might also make a great movie!

  12. FBT says:

    I also loved this. It was so different from what I normally read. Definately worth the hype.

  13. I’ve been wanting to read this one–that cover is just so perfect!

  14. Leslie says:

    I saw this in audio at my library and wasn’t sure if I’d like it so I passed. Maybe I’ll give it a go next time I see it on the shelf.

  15. Pingback: Boekrecensie: Afwassingen door Patrick DeWitt | De Boekblogger

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