Is there an intended parallel between Anson and Mitch, Cain and Able?
Absolutely, Mitch is the innocent Able, who does not recognize the evil in his brother; and Anson is the murderous Cain. This is a book about a man–Mitch–who was raised to see the world in shades of gray and to think like a moral relativist. He rejected the teaching of his father, and he leads an ethical life; but he has been numbed, by his upbringing, such that he cannot recognize true evil. In the course of this story, he awakens to the reality of evil in the world, perhaps even Evil in the upper case. When a story has twists in it, I always play fair with the reader, leaving clues, and when Taggart quotes God’s words to Cain–“Blood cryeth unto me from the ground”–a little foreshadowing is indeed underway. I am fair but also sneaky.