With this, his first novel, Bruce MacDonald juggles the themes of economics, love, religion, spirituality, and self-delusion with the balance, dexterity, and mastery of an old hand from Cirque du Soleil. Smart, funny, and profoundly seditious, Coureurs de Bois is an exhilarating and satiric tour-de-force -- an eloquent, insightful, and contemporary novel that counterpoints iconoclastic acerbic wit with honest compassion and seduces with its compelling and provocative characters, scathing societal critique, and a playfully applied sense of mysticism. Coureurs de Bois recounts the impudent odyssey of William Tobe, an Ottawa-born economics grad, who moves to Toronto and falls under the spell of the recently paroled Randall Cobb Seymour. "The Cobb" is a vengefully shrewd and charismatic Native Canadian -- part Mohawk, part Ojibway -- the embodiment of the trickster and a powerfully animated personality of cunning, gall, and uninhibited entrepreneurial instincts. He is hell-bent on beating the white man at his own dirty game and, in doing so, he masters what he calls "the Queen's economy." Good-hearted Will not only becomes involved in Cobb's scams, but finds himself swept up in his own evolving, urban vision quest.