Monday, April 23, 2007

The Book of Taltos

The Book of Taltos

Steven Brust

Date: 2005-07-14 22:23:56   —   $10.20   —   Book

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Fiction, Fantasy

Vlad Taltos— who always puts me in the mind of a private detective, I guess it's just his wisecracking style— is further described in the two novels that make up the omnibus. In the first, you get to see his meeting with the Dragaeran nobles Sethra Lavode and Morrolan, as he gets roped into bringing Aliera out from the Paths of the Dead. It's things like this that give you the sense that Vlad really, really has a knack for getting in over his head... and an amazing ability to get himself out of trouble.

In the second book, set latest in the series to date, Vlad is still trying to cope with his estranged wife and ends up taking a commission that is both dangerous and explosive. You get the sense that Brust doesn't much care for idealistic revolutionaries, even as he lauds their goals; Vlad's confusion over the whole business is wonderfully contrast with his wistful note that he misses his wife's sense of humor, something she has apparently decided is too frivolous. I really don't get his fatalistic acceptance of likely death, however.

Vlad strikes me as the sort of character who will lose everything if he stops; he has to juggle like mad to keep things in the air. He's a snarky guy who always manages to keep talking too long but I like him anyway.

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