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Vlad Taltos Books in Order: How to read Steven Brust’s fantasy series?

  • Fabien 

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Adventures on Dragaera.

What is the Vlad Taltos series about?

Written by American fantasy and science fiction author Steven Brust, this long-running fantasy series is about a man named Vlad Taltos*, an assassin in the magical metropolis of Adrilankha.

Set in the world of Dragaera, the story follows wisecracking Vlad Taltos and his jhereg—a dragon-like companion— who share a telepathic link with him. Together, they are deadly and live tumultuous adventures, even when they are the ones who are hunted.

*táltos is Hungarian for a kind of supernatural person in folklore.

Brust has also written another series set in Dragaera, the Khaavren Romances. It takes place a thousand years before the birth of Vlad Taltos. Then, the Dragaeran Empire is a hotbed of intrigue, sorcery, intrigue, wild adventure, and intrigue. For those who would be heroes, it is a delightful time to be alive—and an easy place to die.

Vlad Taltos Books in Order:

There are two ways to read the Vlad Taltos series, the publication order (we look at it first) and the chronological order (available at the end of this article).

Vlad Taltos Books In publication order

Jhereg Vlad Taltos Books in Order 150x250 Yendi Vlad Taltos Books in Order 149x250 Teckla Vlad Taltos Books in Order 151x250

  1. Jhereg – Vlad Taltos is a mobster and assassin in the magical metropolis of Adrilankha. A member of the Great House of Jhereg (named for the tiny dragon-like creatures native to Dragaera), Taltos is given the largest contract of his career but the job is even more complicated than he expects.
  2. Yendi – Vlad Taltos and his Jhereg learn how the love of a good woman can turn a cold-blooded killer into a real mean SOB…. Vlad tells the story of his early days in the House Jhereg, how he found himself in a Jhereg war, and how he fell in love with the wonderful woman, Yendi, who killed him.
  3. Teckla – Vladimir Taltos is a short-lived, short-statured Easterner (what we would call a human) in a world mostly populated by the long-lived, extremely tall Dragaerans. He is also an assassin and petty crime lord. His lifestyle and career require some difficult moral choices. When his wife Cawti joins an uprising of Easterners and peasant Dragaerans (the Teckla of the title), it causes a severe strain in their marriage, and Vlad begins to question those choices.

Taltos Vlad Taltos Books in Order 150x250 Phoenix Vlad Taltos Books in Order 152x250 Athyra Vlad Taltos Books in Order 153x250

  1. Taltos – When a Dragaeran employee absconds with more than two thousand imperials, Lord Vlad Taltos, must follow him to Dzur Mountain and face Sethra Lavode, a dangerous vampire.
  2. Phoenix – Verra, Vlad’s patron goddess, hires him to assassinate a king whose country lies outside the Dragaeran Empire, resulting in increased tension between the two places. Meanwhile, the peasant Teckla and the human Easterners persevere in their fight for civil rights.
  3. Athyra – Vlad Taltos is very good at killing people. That, combined with two faithful companions and a talent for witchcraft, makes him an assassin par excellence. But lately his heart just hasn’t been in his work, so he decides to retire. Unfortunately, old enemies have scores to settle with Vlad. So much for retirement!

Orca Vlad Taltos Books in Order 151x250 Dragon Vlad Taltos Books in Order 163x250 Issola Vlad Taltos Books in Order 151x250

  1. Orca – With the help of his two jhereg, sorceror and former assassin-for-hire Vlad Taltos takes on the corrupt House of the Orca as he sets out to uncover a huge financial scandal.
  2. Dragon – Vlad Taltos and his smart-mouthed reptile familiar Loiosh find themselves in over their heads when they become caught in the middle of a war between two rival Dragonlords, in a witty fantasy adventure.
  3. Issola – Teldra wants Vlad Taltos’ help, because Morrolan and Aliera have disappeared, and according to Sethra Lavode, it looks like they may be in the hands of the Jenoine. Does he want to mess with them? The guys who made this place?

Dzur Vlad Taltos Books in Order 152x250 Jhegaala Vlad Taltos Books in Order 155x250 Iorich Vlad Taltos Books in Order 162x250

  1. Dzur – Vlad Taltos has always had to keep his wits about him. Long ago, he made a place for himself as a captain of the Jhereg, the noble house that runs the rackets in the great imperial city of Adrilankha. But love, revolution, betrayal, and revenge ensued, and for years now Vlad has been a man on the run, struggling to stay a step ahead of the Jhereg who would kill him without hesitation.
  2. Jhegaala – Fresh from the collapse of his marriage, and with the criminal Jhereg organization out to eliminate him, Vlad decides to hide out among his relatives in faraway Fenario. All he knows about them is that their family name is Merss and that they live in a papermaking industrial town called Burz. At first Burz isn’t such a bad place, though the paper mill reeks to high heaven. But the longer he stays there, the stranger it becomes…
  3. Iorich – House Jhereg is still hunting Vlad Taltos. There’s a big price on his head on Draegara City. Then he hears disturbing news. Aliera has been arrested by the Empire on a charge of practicing elder sorcery, a capital crime. It doesn’t make sense. It would be idiotic of Vlad to jump into this situation. Naturally, that’s exactly why he’s going to get completely involved…

Tiassa Vlad Taltos Books in Order 153x250 Hawk Vlad Taltos Books in Order 153x250 Vallista Vlad Taltos Books in Order 168x250

  1. Tiassa – Once, Vlad Taltos knew his trade: he killed people for a living. That skill got him his foothold in House Jhereg, running the rackets for a chunk of urban Adrilankha. Later, things happened that left Vlad a changed man, on the run from the Jhereg and frequently involved in the affairs of Dragonlords, Empresses, and even Jenoine. Far more involved than the average human.
  2. Hawk – For years, Vlad Taltos has run from one end of the Empire to the other, avoiding the Jhereg assassins who pursue him. Now, finally, he’s back in the imperial capital where his family and friends are. He means to stay there this time. Whatever happens. And whatever it takes.
  3. Vallista – As long as the Jhereg have a price on his head, Vlad Taltos’s life is…messy. Meanwhile, for years, Vlad’s path has been repeatedly crossed by Devera. Now, Devera has appeared again to lead Vlad into a mysterious, seemingly empty manor overlooking the Great Sea. Inside this structure are corridors that double back on themselves, rooms that look out over other worlds, and – just maybe – answers to some of Vlad’s long-asked questions about his world and his place in it.

Tsalmoth Vlad Taltos Books in Order 163x250

  1. Tsalmoth – Vlad Taltos is in love. With a former assassin who may just be better than he is at the Game. Women like this don’t come along every day and no way is he passing up a sure bet. So a wedding is being planned. Along with a shady deal gone wrong and a dead man who owes Vlad money. Setting up the first and trying to deal with the second is bad enough. And then bigger powers decide that Vlad is the perfect patsy to shake the power structure of the kingdom. More’s the pity that his soul is sent walkabout to do it. How might Vlad get his soul back and have any shot at a happy ending?

Khaavren Romances Books in Order

Also set in Dragaera, the Khaavren Romances is a spin-off series set centuries before Vlad’s time.

The Phoenix Guards Vlad Taltos Books in Order 165x250 Five Hundred Years After Vlad Taltos Books in Order 164x250 The Paths of the Dead Vlad Taltos Books in Order 167x250

  1. The Phoenix Guards – Khaavren of the House of Tiassa is a son of landless nobility, possessor of a good sword and “tolerably well-acquainted with its use.” Along with three loyal friends, he enthusiastically seeks out danger and excitement. But in a realm renowned for repartee and betrayals, where power is as mutable as magic, a young man like Khaavren, newly come from the countryside, had best be wary. His life depends on it. And so does the future of Draegara.
  2. Five Hundred Years After – This is the story of the conspiracy against the Empire that begins in the mean streets of the Underside and flourishes in the courtly politics of the Palace where Khaavren has loyally served in the Guards this past half-millennium. It is the tale of the Dragonlord Adron’s overweening schemes, of his brilliant daughter Aliera, and of the eldritch Sethra Lavode. And it is the tale of four boon companions, of love, and of revenge…a tale from the history of Dragaera, of the events that changed the world.
  3. The Paths of the Dead – Two hundred years after Adron’s Disaster, in which Dragaera City was accidentally reduced to an ocean of chaos by an experiment in wizardry gone wrong, the Empire isn’t what it used to be. Deprived at a single blow of their Emperor, of the Orb that is the focus of the Empire’s power, of their capital city with its Impe-rial bureaucracy, and of a great many of their late fellow citizens, the surviving Dragaerans have been limping through a long Interregnum, bereft even of the simple magic and sorcery they were accustomed to using in everyday life. Now the descendants and successors of the great ad-venturers Khaavren, Pel, Aerich, and Tazendra are growing up in this seemingly diminished world, convinced, like their elders, that the age of adventures is over and nothing interesting will ever happen to them. They are, of course, wrong . . . .

The Lord of Castle Black Vlad Taltos Books in Order 155x250 Sethra Lavode Vlad Taltos Books in Order 158x250 The Baron of Magister Valley Vlad Taltos Books in Order 165x250

  1. The Lord of Castle Black – The Interregnum is over. To everyone’s astonishment, Zerika, a very young Phoenix, has coolly emerged from the Paths of the Dead, carrying with her the Orb, which everyone had thought was lost in Adron’s Disaster. The Orb is the heart of the Dragaeran Empire, the source of all its magic–and the infallible sign that Zerika is the new Empress. But not everyone is happy to hear the news. It’s been 250 years since Adron’s Disaster, and power vacuums never stay that way for long. Kâna, a Dragonlord, has been expanding his holdings. He now controls almost half the area that was once the Empire — in effect, the Empire re-created, with himself on the throne
  2. Sethra Lavode – An ambitious Dragonlord means to rebuild the Empire in his own name. But unknown to him, the true heir, the Phoenix Zerika, has already retrieved the Imperial Orb from the Paths of the Dead. Sethra Lavode means to see Zerika on the throne. To do so will entail a climactic battle of sorcery and arms, told with all the swashbuckling flair for which Steven Brust is known.
  • The Baron of Magister Valley – Reader, you will undoubtedly have had the misfortune of consuming the rotten fruit of fallacies that we—Paarfi of Roundwood (esteemed historian of House of Hawk and exquisite artisan of truths)—“borrow” our factual recount of Dragaeran history from some obscure fellow who goes by the name Al Dumas or some silly nomenclature of that nature. The salacious claims that The Baron of Magister Valley bears any resemblance to a certain nearly fictional narrative about an infamous count are unfounded. Our tale is that of a nobleman who is betrayed by those he trusted and subsequently imprisoned. After centuries of confinement, he contrives to escape and prepares to avenge himself against his betrayers.

The Collected Editions

The Book of Jhereg  162x250 The Book of Taltos 165x250 The Book of Athyra Jhereg 3  169x250 The Book of Dragon Dragon and Issola Vlad  167x250 The Book of Dzur Comprising the Novels Dzur and Jhegaala Vlad  167x250

  1. The Book of Jhereg – Collects Jhereg, Yendi, and Teckla.
  2. The Book of Taltos – Collects Taltos and Phoenix.
  3. The Book of Athyra – Collects Athyra and Orca.
  4. The Book of Dragon – Collects Dragon and Issola.
  5. The Book of Dzur – Collects Dzur and Jhegaala.

Vlad Taltos Books In chronological order

  1. Jhereg, prologue
  2. Taltos
  3. Dragon, main chapters
  4. Yendi
  5. Dragon, interludes
  6. Tiassa , section 1
  7. Jhereg, main chapters
  8. Teckla
  9. Phoenix
  10. Jhegaala
  11. Athyra
  12. Orca
  13. Issola
  14. Dzur
  15. Tiassa , section 2
  16. Iorich
  17. Tiassa , section 3
  18. Vallista
  19. Hawk


If you like our article about the Vlad Taltos book order, don’t forget to bookmark it! You may also want to see our Iron Druid Chronicles reading order, or our guide to Roger Zelazny’s Amber series.

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