Cover Image: Trickster Drift

Trickster Drift

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Member Reviews

Filled action, relatable characters, and magic in all the right places, this book is even better than the first in the series and I’m so excited for the next book. Eden Robinson’s writing is gorgeous and impossible not to get drawn into. I wasn’t sure on Jared in Son of a Trickster, but now that I’ve come this far, I’m totally sold on and rooting for this baby trickster. He’s easily taken a place as one of my favourite protagonists. 

Robinson has seamlessly sewn magic into the real world and it is brilliantly and believably done, not only that, but it often comes together with an unbeatable sense of humor (how on earth can she write such dark things and then make me laugh out loud?). One of the greatest aspects of this book is the characters, she has a knack for writing larger than life, completely believable characters and relationships. Not only is Jared’s family wonderfully complex and realistic, but she captures the complicated nature of dealing with a family like that perfectly. 

This book is a roller-coaster ride into magical realism and a wonderfully indigenous world and I recommend Eden Robinson’s work to absolutely everyone (Seriously, I can give you a list of her must-reads. Spoiler: It’s all of them).
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I'd enjoyed Eden Robinson's Son of a Trickster last year, but I loved the second book in the Trickster trilogy. We again follow Jared Martin, a young indigenous man who has a bit of magic about him. He has now moved to Vancouver for school. Although his only desire is to attend AA meetings, be normal, and to go to school, so that he can be a medical imaging technician, there are a lot of things holding him back! He is navigating relationships with some of his quirky family members, including his aunt and other relatives, dodging his stalker, and dealing with ghosts and other magic. This was a fun read and I'm already looking forward to the next instalment of this trilogy. 

Thanks to the author, NetGalley, and Knopf Canada for the opportunity to read this one in exchange for an honest review.
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My Rating (out of 5)

This is the second book in the TRICKSTER series. You can check out my review of the first book, SON OF A TRICKSTER in my previous blog post.

I enjoyed the first book - SON OF A TRICKSTER, but I enjoyed TRICKSTER DRIFT even more. 

Perhaps it was that having already been acquainted with the author's writing style and/or the characters. Perhaps I just felt more like cheering in Jared's corner as he is fighting so hard to maintain sobriety. Perhaps this book was just more magical to me.  Whatever the case may be, it is a stunning sequel. 

Jared is trying to move on with a "normal" life.  He has sworn off drugs and alcohol in an effort to keep the magical creatures that nearly undid him at bay. He tries to put distance between himself and the people who enabled his toxic lifestyle and has packed a bag and moved to Vancouver to attend school and start building a solid foundation for his future. 

But if he couldn't run and hide from his mother's psychotic ex David, he certainly couldn't run and hide from the magic creatures that tend to gravitate to him. Magic always finds him, and while he makes friends with and cares for some of these beings, some are still a real danger to him.  

Robinson's ability to weave traditional first nations mythology into a modern coming-of-age/fantasy/horror is a real gift.  I am looking forward to the final book in the series - RETURN OF THE TRICKSTER, as of this writing I was unable to find any information regarding the anticipated release date, but I know I will be keeping an eye out for it! 

According to the CBC, as reported in this article, a film deal is in the works for the trilogy!

Happy Reading,
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This is an exciting second book in Robinson's Trickster trilogy full of new characters and surprises.  Jared moves to East Van to go to school and moves into his aunt's apartment which comes with not only family baggage, but a whole new cast of characters who act as a grounding force in his life; a kind of extended family.  And boy does he need it, since the spirit world, related and not, quickly discovers his whereabouts. The swift pace of this quickly carries the reader through to the cliffhanger ending .  Can't wait for the third book to see where Jared will end up.
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I only discovered Canadian Indigenous author Eden Robinson’s writing just over one year ago, when I had the distinct pleasure of meeting her at the 2017 F.O.L.D. (Festival of Literary Diversity). Eden read from SON OF A TRICKSTER, answered audience questions with the patience of a Saint, allowed us fans to have our photographs taken with her and autographed copies of all of her books until I am sure her petite hands must have been more painful than Jared’s experience in the cave with the river otters … and she did all this with a beautific smile on her face.

One thing I can tell you about Eden Robinson is that she has the most distinctive and infectious laugh of anyone I have ever met. From that day forward, I have been a dedicated fan of her writing and I have been eagerly awaiting the publication of TRICKSTER DRIFT.

I would like to thank #NetGalley for providing me with an ARC (Advance Review Copy) of #TricksterDrift

Firstly, Eden is a hugely talented Indigenous author from British Columbia, Canada. Secondly, she has a talent for writing about realistic situations and infusing them with supernatural and Indigenous aspects.
Thirdly, this amazing woman has the ability to draw the reader so deeply into her story that several hours of reading go by in what seems like the blink of an eye.

One of my favorite quotes from this book comes from Chapter 36, in which Eden describes the tectonic plate upon which North America sits. The quote reads like this:

“The speed at which the North American plate crawls across the planet makes glaciers seem like rabbits on Red Bull.”

If you only have time to read a single book this year, I cannot stress highly enough that you need to chose Eden Robinson as the author to pick.

I rate TRICKSTER DRIFT as 5 out of 5 Stars ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ and I wholeheartedly recommend it to all readers aged sixteen and up.
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Reading the Giller short-listed Son of a Trickster last fall turned out to be a pleasant surprise.  Some have labelled it YA, but I disagree that a teenaged protagonist means a book belongs in that fluffy genre.  Jared may be a young adult, but his problems are anything but the usual high school drama. Not only does he abuse drugs and alcohol to the extreme, but Jared learns in the first book that his mother is a witch and his real father a Trickster.  Now, in Trickster Drift, Jared is nearing a year of sobriety and has kept magic at a distance since the events of the first book.  As he begins a new life in Vancouver to attend school, Jared avoids drinking and smoking, but he continues to willfully ignore the dangers all around him – some from our world, others more fantastical.

Trickster Drift has a fun cast of characters, from his quirky Aunt Mave to the ghost who likes to watch Doctor Who in her apartment.  As Jared forms new relationships in a new city, the fact remains that not everyone’s motives are what they seem.

Thanks to NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for the ARC.  It was a lot of fun!
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This is a great read and will leave you excited for the next book! Eden Robinson has a super power of writing teens and young adults that actually are human beings rather than just an amalgamation of stereotypes which is surprisingly rare even in the boom times of the YA novel. Such a new and unique story it was such a breath of fresh air to read. Expect lots of action, supernatural and otherwise in this one.
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I was excited to receive an ARC from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 
Trickster Drift is the second book in the Trickster Trilogy by Eden Robinson. The first novel is set primarily in Kitimat B.C., the town where I was born. It even mentioned Kemano, the place I grew up. I think that’s a first I have seen on both counts! 
Trickster Drift follows after the dramatic end to Son of a Trickster where Jared and his girlfriend Sarah barely escape with their lives—although Jared is short one toe thanks to the experience! 

The complex situation they went through scares Jared enough to drop the drinking and drugs and go straight to AA as a help to get his life turned around. However, his support community (if you can call it that!) of his mother, estranged father and even most of his friends are offended by his turning from substances and so Jared strikes out to Vancouver to continue his education and start afresh. 

Of course it doesn’t really turn out that way am the drama follows him in the people and situations that turn up in his life. For the first 90% of the book, Jared manages to keep things together. He navigates near homelessness, toxic relationships and the resurfacing of an ex stepfather who bears a grudge. Through all of that, he keeps his composure through his own resilience and the support of AA meetings to keep him going.  With the assistance of a couple of helpful ghosts, Jared manages to pass his classes and avoid his ex step father turned stalker. He makes good choices as he helps others and himself along his journey. 
And then all hell breaks loose. 

I did not care for the ending to this book. Up to the 90% mark, I would have given the story a 4.5 or even 5 stars. I thought Jared was an excellent character who was struggling but true to his goals and where he wanted to be in life.  
I have to admit that I am not the biggest fan of magic and creatures who are only wearing human skin as a disguise but I accepted that as part of the story. The ending went way too far in that direction for my liking, although I can admit that others might say the first 90% was boring and only the last 10% made the book worth reading! 
Whichever way, a person might prefer, Jared is certainly an interesting, positive character. As a 17 year old, we could all learn from him how to keep moving toward life’s goals, even if we don’t all have the abilities he seems to be discovering within himself!

I look forward to the concluding book of the trilogy!
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Eden Robinson has a spectacular voice: warm, funny, clever, engaging. Her likable main character, first encountered in Robinson's Son of a Trickster, encounters threats both natural (alcohol, intrusive neighbours, his mom's sociopathic ex) and supernatural (ghosts, monsters, malicious otter/human hybrids) as he tries to move out on his own, survive college in Vancouver, stay sober and not turn into a powerful warlock. Enchanting..
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“Cartographers used to write on maps,“Here be dragons,” when they reached places beyond their known world. When humans touch the void, they say, “Here is magic.”” Eden Robinson

Following the Giller nominated Son of a Trickster, Trickster Drift invites you into a world of creatures, dreamers, shifters, healers, and guides. The second novel in the trilogy finds Jared, freshly sober, leaving Kitimat heading to Vancouver for school where he moves in with his Mom’s estranged sister Mavis Moody. In Trickster Drift, Robinson’s extraordinary storytelling has us exploring Indigenous myth through Vancouver’s East end with a host of new and exciting characters (and some former ones). Things are looking up for Jared, but he’s a magnet for mayhem and magic and his troubles are far from over; he’s being stalked by his mother’s ex David, a Lexus driving preppy with a penchant for violence, he sees ghosts, he sees creatures living inside Aunt Mave’s walls, and he still hears the trickster in his head. 

While I’m not always a fan of magical realism, I will read anything Eden Robinson writes. (Go read them all!!) Her stories are fantastically drawn, gritty, wry, comical, and hard to read. As a white settler, I am sometimes unsettled by the dark world Robinson speaks of; the world her characters live in and try to thrive within is not the world I know. By exposing the raw, sometimes horrible, sometimes mythical reality of some of Canada’s indigenous peoples, Robinson opens portals of understanding, of empathy, of the need for social justice, and takes us to the magical places beyond our known world, for this I am grateful.
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The second book in Eden Robinson's Trickster series, this book follows 17-year-old Jared who is now sober and trying to get his life on track. He has moved to Vancouver to attend school and is welcomed by his estranged Aunt into her home and extended family. But things aren't so easy for Jared as his old life continues to haunt him, including his mother's ex who is stalking him, the temptation to drink, and of course the magic he possesses but doesn't want a part of.

Eden Robinson has written another incredible book as part of a very compelling series. Right from the beginning of the first novel in the series, readers take to Jared and become protective of him as they read. They cheer for him, they grieve for him, they want the best for him. And that continues on in this book, even more this time around. This book gives readers a look at many issues that face Indigenous Canadians, the good and the bad, and also share with readers the incredible storytelling and beauty their culture possesses and the new cast of characters widens the scope of this. Robinson's writing is absolutely beautiful, rich in words and imagery, it makes for a book that you can't put down. I loved the first novel of this series and I loved this one even more.
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