It's been a long time since I read #3 in the series. Unlike some of the other reviewers, I didn't feel like it did a good job of recapping the supporting cast, and I felt lost through a lot of the book. Perhaps related, I had difficulty getting a clean translation from amazon's file (I didn't check the format) to epub.
Stark hasn't changed much; this story picks up two or three months after #3 ends. And that's one of the reasons I liked this book so much, I got to check in on one of my favorite characters right after I'd seen him last and he hadn't settled into a comfortable old age.
Kadrey's similes and snarky observation still cracked me up through the whole book: "...went through the hellion like a pack of chainsaws fired from a cannon." is just one expression that I had to share with Mrs. Brainycat. Maybe it's my midwestern upbringing, but turns-of-words like that endear me to Kadrey's writing, and Stark is still one of the best anti-heroes I've had the pleasure of reading about.
I hope this isn't the last in the series. I had hoped that Stark would spend at least a whole book ruling Hell, as Kadrey's take on it is unique, refreshing and entertaining. Dealing with the archdemons would have been a great development arc for Stark; not only could he bully and mangle them but he'd have to start learning more political approaches. Clearly, Kadrey wanted to keep Stark the one-trick (read "break stuff and see what happens") pony that he has been through the first three books.
If you're going to read any of the Sandman Slim books, definitely read them in order. If you make it to #4, clearly you like Stark (warts and all) and you appreciate Kadrey's dry laconic style. I made it to number four, and I'm hoping there will be a #5.