"What if there was a fantastical cause underlying the social constraints and limited choices confronting a heroine in a novel by Jane Austen or Charlotte Bronte? Galen Beckett began writing The Magicians & Mrs Quent to answer that question." That's what the About the Author section at the end of this book says, and having just finished it, I can definitely see those influences in her writing. I thought the book was inventive and interesting: too often YA fantasy books, especially when they involve magic, fall into post-Potter predictable patterns, but there was a lot in this story that was unexpected, and I'm looking forward to the next book in the series. There were characters here that were familiar: unmarried ladies of quality (but not wealthy enough to catch the lords), Lords with too much time and apathy for their own (or anyone else's) good, Villains who skulk about forests in the dark of night - but Beckett tweaks them just enough that you can't predict where the story is going or how it's going to get there. Quite a good read.