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Check out my last three reviews! Older reviews can be found below!

I don’t generally want to beat games at 100%. I get close, and then I get bored with the standard kind of repeatable activities that pad out games to make them have that oh so coveted “X number of hours” metrics. Some people love that, I just … can’t. I want to find out everything that happens in A Short Hike.

That’s the joy of This is How You Lose a Time War. Yes it is a time traveling story. Yes it is a story between two sides of a conflict. But at its heart, it is a love story and I can’t stop thinking about it.

There is something to be said for expectations. When I see a book labelled under things like fantasy or young adult, I think I know how the book is going to go. Not because I’m some kind of savant, but there is a weight of historic structure around these types of stories. It’s not quite Campbellian, but it’s kind of close to that. You’ve got a young hero who feels out of place, they find out they’re special, and then they use that specialness to change their world. 

It’s not bad, it just kind of is a thing, particularly in the straight, cis, white YA fiction that frequently gets turned into movies. There’s a rhythm to that storytelling.

Which is one of the reasons why I loved Eden Robinson’s Son of a Trickster. When I read the back of the book, I had those expectations on the cadence of the story. But Robinson doesn’t have any interest in that narrative. Instead Son of a Trickster is very much a personal quest with some very personal changes that drive the story.

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