Rupert Venables is a Magid.
It's a Magid's job to oversee what goes on in the vast Multiverse. Actually, Rupert is really only a junior Magid. But he's got a king-sized problem. Rupert's territory includes Earth and the Empire of Korfyros. When his mentor dies Rupert must find a replacement. But there are hundreds of candidates. How is he supposed to choose? And interviewing each one could take forever.
What if he could round them all up in one place?
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Keeping the multiverse in balance requires Magids--powerful magicians who are sensible, pragmatic and often very busy. One such Magid, Rupert Venable, is sorting out a crisis in the Koryfonic Empire while, on earth, he must locate the proper replacement for a recently deceased fellow-Magid. The Empire needs Rupert's talents to help locate missing heirs, and good Magid candidates are hard to track down. These plot strands tie neatly at a fantasy/SF convention--the fictional PhantasmaCon in the equally fictional Hotel Babylon of Wantchester, England. Anyone familiar with such "cons" will appreciate Jones's accurate and wryly fond depiction. The setup works admirably as the plot thickens, for the con hotel is situated on a magical "node" of power; the appearance of a handsome wounded centaur brings little more than comments like "Fantastic costume!" As readers are hurtled toward a conclusion involving the guest of honor's speech, Imperial troopers and a bush-goddess, what might first be perceived simply as mere embellishment and rich detailing prove to be adroitly handled story elements of an intricate plot. Throughout, Jones (Charmed Life, etc.) combines strong writing, high fantasy heroics and delightfully dark humor to sparkling effect.