In the latest entry in the Vlad Taltos series, Brust has gone back to an earlier period in Vlad's life, between the events of Phoenix
, rather than continuing with the current events of Issola
. Vlad returns to the East in search of his mother's family, starting in the small papermaking town of Burz, where his innocent (for Vlad) inquiries lead him into much more trouble than he could have guessed. The central mystery is well-plotted enough (although convoluted), and there's good writing and dialogue, as always. But at this point, I'm not only in it for the writing and the dialogue; I want the books to carry forward the series as a whole, either to continue with current events or to illuminate the backstory, and I didn't really think Jhegaala
added a whole lot, if anything, to Vlad's character and backstory.