Well, I am not sure how this quirky book made it on the Booker short-list or the Tournament of Books. I can say that I adored Eli, the "husky" nice brother, but that was about all that I did enjoy about this story. The dialog was inane and the story simple.
March 3, 2012
I realized that I have never finished this review:
I listened to The Sisters Brothers on audio and wonder if I would have liked it better in the written format. The book is about two hapless brothers who are legendary "bad guys" of the Wild West. They have been hired to kill a guy that would not sell an idea to the brother's "boss".
When I pick a book, I generally will read the publishers synopsis and maybe a review or two. Sometimes all I have to do is like the cover and remotely think I like the synopsis and it makes the list. Other times all someone has to do is to recommend the book and I put it on the list. The more it keeps coming up, the closer to the top of the to read list the book gets. Rarely, will I read more than one or two reviews. This is a book that I wish I had read the reviews, not for the rating, but because someone compared it to the movie "Oh Brother, Where Art Thou?" Had I seen this before I read the book, I would have never touched it. The movie, one of my husbands favorites, is inane - my apologies to those of you who do like the movie, but I hated it.
Anyway, the book is about two brothers - one, the husky nice one and the mean one. Eli is why I remotely like the book and it is getting 3 stars. I love Eli, the husky nice one. He is the books narrator, the conscious. I loved his simpleton persona. I loved the way he felt for Tub and for the most part most of the others around him. How he made it in life without being killed is beyond me, yet this is a book of fiction.
Outside of Eli, the book is a serious of western travel logs and mishaps. The dialog between the brothers and the other characters seemed to me to be very simple and without any deep insight. Although, since the book is coming from Eli, one would not expect the dialog to be very sophisticated, but I love Eli and can't say anything bad about him. Dang, he reminds me of Lenny in Of Mice and Men.
The actual narration for the audiobook was preformed by John Pruden. I did not care for his performance at all. He was a good voice for Eli, but many times, I could not distinguish between Eli and any of the other characters. There were only 4 main characters and I would have to rewind in places to go back and figure out who said what since the voices all sounded the same.
The book did have several laugh out loud moments - the "diet" was by far the funniest part of the book. I need to go back and bookmark that part of the audio and listen to it over again.
I read this as part of the 2012 Tournament of Books. I do not think it will get out of the first round, but it is in the most interesting match up going up against State of Wonder. State of Wonder, with its lack of a decent ending, still gets my vote between the books. However, the match up is going to be judged by the infamous Will Wheaton, of Star Trek (god who knows which generation) and Big Bang Theory, fame. Apparently Will is a big reader and has made this match up one to watch. I won't be upset if Brothers upsets Wonder...