I liked the novel. I liked being thrown into it. Yes, I could see how it might be confusing. And yes, the same thing can annoy me in other fantasy novels at times. (Sometimes I'm patient enough to go with the flow. Other times I give up.) When the book relies on world-building it can be tricky. But for some reason, I didn't mind in this case. True, not all questions were answered. And a bit more back story could have helped things along. But I like to piece some things together myself. And having the author explain each and every thing all at once, all at the beginning, wouldn't make for great storytelling either. I thought not-knowing added to the mystery of it.
With fantasy--especially in series and I don't know if this will be a series or not--but if an author is all action, little explanation we as readers complain because there are unanswered questions and it can be confusing. But if we get a book that is all explanation--all set up--and little action, then we complain that nothing happens and that there is no plot. I've read dozens (and dozens) of first-books-in-the-series where we spend 200 out of 300 pages just waiting for the action to start. And they're not all that fun to read. You hope that the second book improves and the action can finally start rolling along.
Of course, there are exceptions to the rules. Alcatraz versus the Evil Librarians, The Lightning Thief, etc. Books where you're drawn in immediately and stay hooked. But most fantasy is somewhere between the two extremes of too much and too little.
I'm curious if a reread would make a difference? I read this one in April--late April. And so my memory is a bit fuzzy now. Some books are great the first time through when you're caught up in the 'and then what happens' of it and then the second reading, you begin to pick out all the little 'flaws' and 'quirks' that didn't quite work for you. I've had it work the opposite way too. Where a second reading un-confused me and left me loving it.
It could be a mood thing as well. For me, the timing of this one was perfect. I'd just finished a really sludge-worthy book that had kept me bogged down and frustrated. I was looking for a quick read. An entertaining read. Something short and satisfying. For me, this book did that well. It got me out of the funk I was in. I loved the opening chapter. And it held my interest from that point on.