I think that if you read this book by chance and haven't read any of the Valdemar books, you may be lost. I loved it, but I have been reading these books since I found "The Arrows of the Queen" in a book exchange. Many of the early scenes in this book refer back to stories in the last two series and mention characters that are barely seen in the book. I don't recommend this as a story to start with. But if you are familiar with Mags and his children, you will enjoy this next chapter in their story.