I’ve enjoyed all of Brian McClellan’s short stories set in the world of the Powder Mage trilogy so far, and RETURN TO HONOR is no exception. Featuring both Vlora and Olem, it includes two of my favorite supporting characters from the first two books of the tirlogy, and even includes Verundish, whom I believe we first met in HOPE’S END.
In RETURN TO HONOR, Captain Vlora is sent on the trail of a traitorous guard captain who is looking to escape the city with information that we’re told could harm the war effort. Admittedly, it’s a bit of a MacGuffin, but it gives Vlora an excuse to visit with Verundish for a bit of advice, and she in turn points Vlora to Olem as someone who can help.
Olem may be my favorite supporting character from the trilogy so I was excited to see him here, and the story is pleasant enough, but at the same time I can’t say this is mandatory reading for Powder Mage fans. The action scenes are well-done and we get some insight as to how Vlora is treated after cheating on Taniel, but I wouldn’t say there’s really anything new here.