POWER OF THE DOG was a 1967 novel written by Thomas Savage. It concerns two brothers on a ranch in Montana in 1925. They have reached the age when most would consider them confirmed bachelors when the younger, George, falls in love with a widow, upsetting the balance on the ranch. Phil, the alpha male of the family and ranch, is incensed with this and is cruel to both the new wife and her son. Rose starts drinking and her son despairs in how to help his mother. His solution is a drastic one.
I liked the movie of this work well enough to read the novel. We get a lot more insight into Phil especially in the novel. He is a closeted homosexual who has probably only once been able to act on his desires. So he has turned that love to his brother and can't bear losing him to Rose. Rose is a timid woman but her son who seems to be at first is not. We have four interesting characters here and the author makes us sympathetic to each of them. Phil may be a monster in some ways but the writer makes him understandable. A great book. Savage wrote many others, which I will seek out.