What If the Hokey Pokey Really Is What It’s All About?

Do happy people write in diaries? Not according to Piccolo Poggioli, whose hilarious diary describes the horror of a road trip with her mom, a down-market diva with no manners, no money, and no clue. Piccolo longs to escape this epic fail in mother-daughter bonding (and all other sorts of bonding). Her love of words paves the way for them to go home, where she hopes to put away her diary for good. More

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About Rebecca Burke

The young women in my three Young Adult/crossover novels face tough tests with humor, intelligence, and a fierce heart. Of course, this is easier for fictional characters than real human beings!

When I was a teenager, I worked in fields and factories like Carmen, the main character in When I Am Singing to You. And like Valerie, in The Ahimsa Club, I've always been passionate about animals and wish they never had to suffer. But I've never gone on a cross-country road trip with my mother, like Piccolo in What If the Hokey Pokey Really Is What It's All About? Too bad--we would have laughed our way up and down the interstate, feasted on good food whenever possible, and stayed only with people we liked. We never would have adopted a stray Irish Setter because our family dog was a setter (the runway models of the dog world). We'd never make that mistake again.

Two and one-fifth of my books are set in Iowa, where I grew up and now live with my family--a husband, two teenagers, and another neurotic dog, a Yorkie named Smokey.

In between teaching and work as an editor and professional book reviewer, I've lived and sometimes taught in Mexico, England, Spain, and the Netherlands. I am always plotting the next trip.


My novel When I Am Singing to You has won First Place, YA fiction ebook (English/Spanish) in the 2012 International Latino Book Awards! I am so honored.

When I Am Singing to You is also named one of the "16 Essential Latino Children's Books by ¿Qué Más?, the blog for MamasLatinas, the leading bilingual online site for Hispanic moms. This site has 780,000 unique visitors a month


Listen to my latest interview with Bill Thompson, host of The Bookcast: http://www.thebookcast.com/ya/its-not-snooping-read-this-14-year-olds-hilarious-diary/

See my latest interview with Ben Wallace: http://benjaminwallacebooks.wordpress.com/

See my interview at Kindle Author with David Wisehart:

When I Am Singing to You is featured at Kindle YA Authors. See excerpt plus my thoughts on writing Young Adult novels, especially one with a Latina teen. http://www.kindleyaauthors.com/2012/01/when-i-am-singing-to-you-by-rebecca.html

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