This novel did nothing to abate my fierce desire to just get on a plan and drain my bank account on an expedition throughout Europe. How awesome would it be to have an aunt like Peg who funded a cross-country trip to help you discover who you are? I think that the idea of setting a novel in a distant country was handled superbly. By placing Ginny in an unfamiliar area, the character development was highlighted and as the reader, you could watch the growth.
I think the sequel was well worth the years it took.
It's Maureen Johnson. I don't think it even needs a recommendation.