The Lucy Variations, by Sara Zarr Review

Monday, 29 September 2014

The Lucy Variations, by Sara Zarr

Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Contemporary, Romance

Rating: 1.5/5 stars

Publication: May 7, 2013, by Little Brown 

Format: Hardcover Edition (borrowed)

Goodreads Summary: Lucy Beck-Moreau once had a promising future as a concert pianist. The right people knew her name, her performances were booked months in advance, and her future seemed certain.

That was all before she turned fourteen.

Now, at sixteen, it's over. A death, and a betrayal, led her to walk away. That leaves her talented ten-year-old brother, Gus, to shoulder the full weight of the Beck-Moreau family expectations. Then Gus gets a new piano teacher who is young, kind, and interested in helping Lucy rekindle her love of piano -- on her own terms. But when you're used to performing for sold-out audiences and world-famous critics, can you ever learn to play just for yourself?

The Lucy Variations is a story of one girl's struggle to reclaim her love of music and herself. It's about finding joy again, even when things don't go according to plan. Because life isn't a performance, and everyone deserves the chance to make a few mistakes along the way.


"Climb on the stage stairs. Go to the piano. Sit on the bench; adjust the pedals. Because you're on the program. Momentum. Decisions made for her, performances planned a year in advance. I don't want to go, she'd told her grandmother. You have to, her mother said."

My expectations of reading something by Sara Zarr go lower and lower each time, mainly because I'm disappointed every single time. The Lucy Variations was a book that was like a piano—mellow, and soft. But at the same time, it was very disappointing, and boring whereas nothing was happening for more than half of the novel.

And I surprisingly was surprised with the outcome. 1.5 stars? That's pretty horrible if you ask me. The only reason that I didn't DNF this book was because it was short. I already read half of the book when I realized that it wasn't going anywhere, so I rather would just go on out and finish it and see the outcome. There were some good parts of the book, but I must say the main deal in this review will be negativity.

What this was mainly about was Lucy's regeneration of loving music again. She's sixteen, and her love of music has faded away. She feels like it's a job. Playing the piano is a chore, a job. When she meets her brother's new piano teacher, she finds that she might be able to find what she once lost.

Throughout the whole book, I felt like I was waiting for something to happen, but then it never did.

As soon as I began this book, I had a feeling that it wouldn't end up so amazing as some other people have found it to be. In fact, I'm still sitting here, clueless, wondering what people saw in this.

The plot and concept were both a catastrophe. #SorryNotSorry Something major was missing, and there really was NOTHING HAPPENING! So you may be asking, what was the positive stuff? Characters. 

Lucy—basically. She made me feel sympathy and all, but at the same time, she was such a strong person, but her overall impact didn't make me adore the book, either. She made it worthwhile for a lot of the time, because of her experiences and way she dealt with things. I give her the Oscar and the thumbs up. The rest of the book was a fracture.

I realize that I was in a good mood, and I didn't let this book ruin it, so I went on with finishing it. I didn't like the ending, especially since the rest of the novel wasn't all detailed either. We were just left with knowing nothing, just like we knew nothing about what was going on during the rest of the book. So there, voila. Here you have a disappointing novel that shattered my feelings for this author's books. I wanted something satisfying and fresh.


  1. I didn't like this book AT ALL. I'm a pretty easy reviewer, but I Lucy's character development was good, but I didn't like her immaturity or the romance. It just wasn't for me.
    But as usual, GREAT post. :-)

    Samantha | Bookish Serendipity

  2. High five! *nods* There was so much else I needed but I never got it. :( Thank you, Samantha! <3


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