I have to admit this is the first time I've read it, I never found Vance's works before. When I was younger my reading turned more to Heinlein and hard science fiction, than to fantasy.
The stories themselves share a common setting, and are loosely linked. Turjan was Mazirian's prisoner, and was freed by T'sais' sister T'sain. In Turjan's prequel, he steals an item from Prince Kandive the Golden, uncle to Ulan Dhor. T'sais has an encounter with Laine, which sets up the reader to applaud Laine's subsequent demise. Guyal merely passes through the landscape sketched by the previous stories on his journey to knowledge and perhaps wisdom.
Inspirations: It's all here Vancian magic, strange monsters, mighty wizards, devil-may-care rogues. These stories are what Gygax and Arneson were trying to recreate when they brought role playing to life.
Read it if you haven't already.