“What happens after depends on what happens during.”
What if there is a form of magic in our mundane world? Right before our eyes, but unrecognized. What if, under certain conditions and in certain places, that magic swells into something truly supernatural? What if … but that would be telling.
“Everything has a purpose.”
Good opening to an extended series: the Great Game. Good world(s) and character building. The protagonists are identifiable, but neither stereotypes nor perfect. Their foibles make them that much more interesting. A satisfying hook to pull the reader into the story/ies. I suggest skipping the Foreword. While it contains interesting insights, it also contains too many spoilers.
“Magic can never be described as believable, but it must be consistent, and should reasonably meld with the politics and religion of the world.”
Creates a world, bestiary, languages, religion and literature without inflicting massive data dumps on the reader.
“He concluded that anything so lacking in sense must obviously be very holy.”
A satisfying climax and hook into the next novel. Progressive revelation expands the reader’s knowledge and interest.
“[She] swept into the room like Boadicea sacking Londinium.”