cover image Dzur


Steven Brust, . . Tor, $24.95 (285pp) ISBN 978-0-7653-0148-2

After a detour with the Viscount of Adrilankha trilogy (Sethra Lavode , etc.), Brust returns to sometime assassin and popular protagonist Vlad Taltos in the 10th installment of his famously disordered series. Beginning where Issola (2001) left off, this novel follows Vlad simultaneously through a complicated scheme to disrupt the political maneuvering of a shady association known as the Left Hand of the Jhereg and an exquisite dinner at the renowned restaurant Valabar's. (Each chapter, like a course in a literary feast, opens with descriptions of the fare at Valabar's.) Brust brings the grimy streets of Adrilankha to life in swift, vivid strokes and keeps the narrative skipping with wisecracking conversations amongVlad, his companion Loiosh and friends old and new. Though the in-jokes fly thick and fast and the line between familiar and recycled sometimes blurs, new readers won't notice and fans will be too happy at the prospect of another Taltos book to mind. (Aug.)