Plot: The plot follows many existing conventions - lonely but good-hearted heroine, travel as a route to self-discovery, unwittingly getting caught up in someone else's crime story - but it's nicely structured and paced. It keeps being fun.
Prose/Style: There is a certain breathlessness to Lucy's internal narration and frequent exclamations of wonder at being in a foreign city, and the emails from her doting, somewhat smothering family are pitch-perfect. There's a sweetness and innocence to the narrator that may make this more appropriate for a YA format.
Originality: Plenty of other books and films have put a heroine in a foreign setting, caught up in events she doesn't quite understand, though this is far more charming and wide-eyed than other comparable stories.
Character Development: Lucy's innocence and frustration with a life in which she does just what is expected of her are plausible and winning, if a little on the '"gee whiz" side. As she takes action, gets mobile and opens her eyes to the wider world and to people she would never have met otherwise, she grows and changes in a way that is easy for the reader to root for.
Date Submitted: June 15, 2019