Novels of depth have both an internal story and an external story. These are sometimes referred to as premise and plot.
The external story is precisely that–the external events that move your story forward and that form the framework for the internal story.
The internal story is what the novel is REALLY about. It is the inner journey of the heroine (hero) during which she changes and comes to an epiphanous understanding about herself and about life.
Finally, the internal story must be intertwined with the external story. Indeed, the internal story hangs, as it were, on the external story. The two work together to make a novel more than just a story. They work to make it an unforgettable memory.