Title: The Magicians and Mrs. Quent
Author: Galen Beckett
Recommendation: For those who like Jane Austen, Charlotte Bronte and magical fantasy novels.
Summary: Ivy, Rose, and Lily are three Lockwell sisters living in Victorian-esque alternative universe with their mother. Their father is turned mad while practicing magic and now is taken care of by the family which is struggling to make the ends meet. Mr. Rafferdy and Mr. Garrit are friends from different walks in life who will find out more about magic than they expect.
Reactions: Overall this novel was a pretty good mix of Victorian romance and fantasy. The Victorian setting comes through from the first page in manners, setting descriptions, and the writing style. Charlotte Bronte was a rather obvious inspiration as part of the book's plot greatly resembles Jane Eyre. The major differences are the modern prose and a more likable heroine. Fortunately, despite the resemblance, there is still a large part of the plot that is quite different.
There are also plenty of witty dialogues, family relations, and society scenarios explored during the book. Those who look strictly for action, may not find this the most enjoyable novel (nor would I recommend any Victorian novels to action-seekers). However, this is not to say that the plot dragged on. I found myself reading the book quickly and sometimes late into the night. The ending tied some lose ends, but clearly this is meant to be a part of a longer series as many questions remain unanswered at the end.
Overall, I enjoyed the reading experience and I think I would consider picking up the next book of the series and seeing where the characters will go. I have certainly discovered an interesting new author in Galen Beckett.