Fun book! There's a bit of intrigue here, a bit of serpent goodness, and psionics! Also poison and disease. It all makes for an interesting departure from the typical Forgotten Realms story of swashbuckling and high magic. I've been a fan of the hot southern reaches of the Realms for a while, and it's really neat to see a story based there.
It's also cool to see Smedman's take on the yuan-ti ruled city of Hlondeth. Non-human cultures are always a challenge to pull off, but I think Smedman does a fine job of it here.
Part of her main character's bag of tricks is his skill at magical rope-making, and I loved the way Smedman wove in details of how these things were constructed. It's cool to think about where all the raw materials (unicorn hair, troll gut, and so on) came from and how difficult they are to work with. It's the little touches like this that make me a real fan of Smedman's writing.
Hlondeth is a city populated by the humanoid serpents, known as the yuan-ti, and ruled by the powerful House of Serpents, and the ultimate target of The Pox. A human cult whose members worship the goddess of plague and disease, and who begins to work the deadly will of Sibyl's Chosen, a dangerous cabal of yuan-ti who will turn every human in the city into a freakish taineted one unless Dediana a yuan-ti halfblood, can stop them.
Wonderful!!!!! That is all I can say without giving away secrets of the book.