Terrier is the most recent of Tamora Pierce’s novels set in Tortall and surrouding countries, though set a couple hundred years before the other books. It’s in epistolary format, almost entirely in the form of the diary of Beka Cooper, a trainee in the Provost’s Guard, the equivalent of a city police force. (There are a couple of excerpts from other people’s diaries at the beginning, which are annoying for being both clumsy setup and printed in difficult fonts.)
This is Pierce’s first novel told in first-person point of view, and though the form slips slightly on occasion, the voice works well overall. While I thought a significant character could have used some more development, that could be attributable to the focus of the book as well as the form; and if I read things right, there ought to be plenty of opportunity to develop this character in the forthcoming two books.
I also look forward to more about the Court of the Rogue, which seems to be a cross between the Mafia and a government for the lower classes—one that is benevolent when properly ruled. That kind of thing makes me twitch, thanks to The Lies of Locke Lamora and Pierce’s own Street Magic, but it may be that the compatibility of these two roles will be explored later on. (Or possibly they were explored in the initial Alanna quartet, but somehow I doubt it. I’m not going to re-read those, because I’m trying to cut down on my re-reading, and also I suspect they won’t hold up very well.)
Otherwise, if you like Tamora Pierce’s other books (especially the Kel quartet), you’ll probably like this one.