This book tells the tale of Eli and Charlie Sisters, two guns-for-hire during the California gold rush. Eli, our narrator, is less comfortable with his profession than his brother is, but now the two have been sent from Oregon City to Sacramento, on orders from The Commodore to kill Herman Kermit Warm for a supposed theft. Along the way, Eli tells us of their encounters with whores, witches, innkeepers, pathetic would-be panners, and dentists. There's gun duels, curses, and a bear beating up a horse.
This is an easy, fun read. DeWitt's prose is straightforward and to-the-point. The rapport between the brothers is charming, their exchanges full of dry wit. When it becomes clear that their mission isn't so cut-and-dried, the Sisters brother are forced to reconsider their moral standards and their livelihood. It's a surprisingly human, touching story.