The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr is realistic YA fiction about a girl coming to terms with her family and her future.
months ago, fifteen-year-old Lucy Beck-Moreau walked off the stage of
an international piano competition in Prague, and she hasn't touched a
piano since. Lucy was on a trajectory to become one of the greatest
concert pianists in the world, but when bad news from home caused her to
take a second to think about her life, she realized that she wasn't
enjoying piano any more. Now, Lucy is settling into her normal life as a
privileged teen -- but can she really give up piano completely? Enter
Will, her brother's charismatic young piano teacher. Will and Lucy
become friends . . . close friends . . . and Will encourages Lucy to
play once more, this time for herself. But can Lucy's family accept Lucy
doing piano on her terms?
I spent the bulk of this book thinking
"Oh, this is not a good idea, this is really not a good idea," as Will
and Lucy grew closer and closer. The author did end up taking that
relationship in a direction that I did not expect, and I thought it made
for a stronger ending than I was anticipating. But this book is really
more about Lucy's personal journey back to loving piano and music again.
I'd recommend this book to music lovers and anyone who has been in a
highly competitive situation and questioned whether it was worth the
I listened to the audiobook, which was narrated by the
author. She did an adequate job, and there were some nice touches in
terms of production quality, such as snippets of the music referenced in
the text playing under the narration.
(Reviewed from an audiobook borrowed through my library system.)