The Real Rebecca by Anna Carey

The Real Rebecca

Written by Anna Carey

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The Lovereading4Kids comment

There’s a touch of the Adrian Mole in this amusing tale of the cringing embarrassment suffered by Rebecca, a Dublin schoolgirl, at the hands of her well intentioned parents. Poor Rebecca has to try and convince everyone that her mother’s new book about an awful girl of her age is definitely not about her! Anna Carey who wrote “The Real Rebecca” must remember her own early teen years very well to write so humorously and in such detail . The result is an hilarious read which moves along quickly from one experience to the next in Rebecca’s life, written in the first person. Any young teen will have feelings which will resonate with this story and hopefully will see the humour in it too. Friendships, school, and a paperboy she has her eye on, all feature in character sketches which are accurately and imaginatively described. The story line is strong and comes to a satisfyingly tantalising conclusion to make the reader want to read what happens in the next book which is called Rebecca’s Rules. Definitely recommended for 11+ year olds.


The Real Rebecca by Anna Carey

My name is Rebecca Rafferty, and my mother has ruined my life. Again. I didn't mind her writing boring books for grown-ups. But now she's written one about an awful girl my age and everyone thinks it's me! Including the boy who delivers our newspapers, aka Paperboy, aka the most gorgeous boy in the whole world. Oh, the shame! And if that wasn't awful enough, the biggest pain in my class wants to use my 'fame' to get herself on the reality show 'My Big Birthday Bash'. I've just got to show everyone the REAL Rebecca. But how?


'Our new Book of the Week is The Real Rebecca by Anna Carey, a great new voice and definite Princess of Teen'

'Adolescence is not a period fondly remembered by many but author Anna Carey has a knack of getting the details just right.'

'Carey's teen voice is spot-on, and the dialogue crackles with authenticity and wry humour ... It is an excellent debut novel that would delight any Louise Rennison fan'

'respected Dublin journalists Anna Carey and Bridget Hourican (The Bad Karma Diaries, due in March) have debut novels with O'Brien Press this season. Carey's book, The Real Rebecca, is the first of this new wave.'

'Publisher O'Brien Press has a reputation for discovering talented children's authors, and this is a very good debut novel: despite the familiar territory it is fresh and original and Carey has a distinctive voice.; -- Books for Keeps 'Rebecca's sharp descriptions of her daily humiliations are very entertaining'

'I love books like this, and they're always a welcome break from the more serious YA I read. If you're looking for an enjoyable, angst-ridden account of a 14-year-old's life, I think you've found the right book. It's well worth a read.'

'The Real Rebecca deals with all sorts of teenage problems ... Carey tackles each subject with humour and realism, not to mention deadpan one-liners that will have you laughing out loud'

'it definitely had a certain spark to it - I read it in one sitting!'

'This is a hilarious and authentic account of a Dublin teenager told with a wit and warmth reminiscent of Judi Curtin' 'I laughed and squirmed my way through The Real Rebecca, the sparkling and spookily accurate diary of a Dublin teenager. It's stonkingly good and I haven't laughed so much since reading Louise Rennison. Teenage girls (and grown-up teens) will love Rebecca -- Sarah Webb, author of the Ask Amy Green books 'A story that anyone who has dreams will enjoy, because the road to achieving dreams is long and hard, but it can be fun, especially with the support of loved ones.

's Reading Corner 'I was laughing throughout most of the book. I like reading books like this because it's interesting to view them from an older perspective (I'm over a decade older than Rebecca), having had some of the same feelings myself.'

's Reading Corner 'I'm hoping for a second book because Rebecca still hadn't found out an important detail about him by the end!'

's Reading Corner 'The characters come to life and the situation's plausible yet mixed-up with plenty of craziness ... Rebecca's a spirited, yet slightly awkward teenager and it's fun spending time in her company. So just like the Battle of the Bands - be prepared to be en -- Tall Tales and Short Stories 'funny first-person narrative with witty one-liners ... The humorous storyline moves along at a cracking pace and we cringe along with Rebecca'

'Hurrah! - the cover isn't pink! Rebecca's a spirited, yet slightly awkward teenager and it's fun spending time in her company. So just like the Battle of the Bands - be prepared to be entertained!'

'Irish journalist Anna Carey's debut book should appeal to young readers, especially those who feel they just aren't understood.'

'The story rattles along at a glorious rate - with plenty of witty asides. Rebecca herself is a thoroughly likeable heroine - angsty and mixed-up but warm-hearted and feisty.'

'With plenty of reference to reality shows, band competition and fashion brands, the background is bang up to date ... I did find Ms Carey's book almost impossible to put aside.'

'Those brief but delicious and cherished conversations with paperboy and the fact that Rebecca doesn't even know his name, yet is madly in love with him, give this diary-style book great credibility.'

'the key strength of this young-teen title is her ability to recreate the acute awkwardness of being 14. -- Evening Echo 'What I loved most about this book was that the dramas were small but significant, and always hilariously written. Rebecca had a brilliantly common-sense approach to the craziness that built around her, and I loved her recognition that even the nastiest g -- Chicklish Blog 'This book is fantastic! Rebecca is sweet, funny and down-to-earth, and I adored her friends, her quirky parents, her changeable but ultimately loving older sister and the swoonworthy paperboy.'

'It's a really good teen book. The Real Rebecca is funny, really funny ... What I really loved about this book was that it wasn't set somewhere in England or somewhere in America but is definitely set in Ireland and is full of slang and reference points -- Sarra Manning's Blog 'What is it like inside the mind of a teenage girl? It's a strange, confused and frustrated place, as Anna Carey's first novel The Real Rebecca makes clear ... A laugh-out loud story of a fourteen-year-old girl, Rebecca Rafferty.'

'Written in the form of a diary, The Real Rebecca is a charming and funny novel that captures the eye-rolling aggravation of being a teenage girl - particularly one with a crush. A great choice for young readers.'

'Written as a diary, this one is aimed at the pre-teen. And they're sure to love it'

'This is a funny light-hearted romp ... Carey's observation of adolescent self-absorption and uncertainty is sure and precise.'

'Now two fresh names to young people's fiction refashion contemporary emotional kaleidoscopes into teen chick lit, a category of writing with its own conventions ... Their (Anna Carey and another author's) skill shows their deft handling of plot and in th -- Irish Times Weekend Review 'Written in diary form, this is a funny book which many teenage girls will identify with even if their mother is not a bestselling novelist.'

'The brilliantly funny The Real Rebecca by Dublin freelancer Anna Carey (O'Brien Press) has to be the start of a new Irish genre- teen chicklit.'

'Anna Carey is a welcome newcomer to the exalted ranks of Irish women writing for 'post-pre-teen'

... Welcome to the world of Rebecca Rafferty: boys, music, bitches and drums.

'gentle angst and comedy at constant counterpoint ... easily read and easily engaged with ... enjoyable foray into young teen fiction.'

, Inis Magazine 'the language and story structure are easily accessible ... brilliantly funny, full of fun and laughs, and the voice of the central character is very genuine and relatable ... A thoroughly enjoyable read and a stron start for Carey.

'wonderfully humorous moments, and moments of great satire too.'

'The Real Rebecca is an excellent book which, if you like 1st person/diary books, can be really exciting in showing ways of school life.'

's 'A pleasurable and extremely humorous read, this novel will appeal to young teens who will enjoy the protagonist's voice and the central theme of self-discovery'

'To find a really funny book, for teenagers, about teenagers, is a treat ... written in the form of a diary, that of a fourteen-year-old girl whose mercurial emotions are reflected in all the entries. These are haphazard, sometimes, but always hilarious . -- School Librarian magazine 'treats the embarrassment of mother/daughter relationships wittily and realistically'

'well written, highly readable'

About the Author

Anna Carey

Anna Carey is a freelance journalist from Drumcondra living in Dublin who has written for the Irish Times, Irish Independent and many other publications. Anna joined her first band when she was fifteen and went on to sing and play with several bands over the next fifteen years. Her last band, El Diablo, released two albums and toured all over the country. Her first book, The Real Rebecca, was published in 2011, and, to her great surprise, it went on to win the Senior Children’s Book prize at the Irish Book Awards. To the delight of many readers, Rebecca returned in the critically acclaimed Rebecca’s Rules, which was shortlisted for the same prize in 2012 (she didn’t win this time, though).

Questons re The Making of Mollie:-

1. What gave you the idea for your book?
I’ve always been interested in women’s history, and I’d been thinking of writing non-fiction about the Irish suffrage movement. But I thought it would be more fun to tell the story of some teenage girls who want to get involved in the movement, even if the movement - or at least Mollie’s suffragette big sister - doesn’t particularly want them

2. When writing The Making of Mollie, how did you transport yourself back to 1912?
I went to my old school, Dominican College on Griffith Avenue in Dublin, and looked at their old year books. The school was founded in Eccles Street in 1883 (the famous suffragette leader Hanna Sheehy-Skeffington was a pupil there, and later worked there as a teacher) and started producing a yearbook in 1913, which was really, really useful and helped me imagine what the school was like back in those days. It also had lots of stories written by the girls themselves, which were very entertaining and inspirational. It was always a pretty progressive school - it was the first Irish institution that taught Catholic girls right up to university degree level, back in the days before girls were allowed attend universities.

3. Put yourself in her shoes - do you think you would have been as brave as Mollie to get involved in the cause, or would you have been more hesitant, like Stella?
I would definitely have supported the cause, and I think I’d definitely have gone on some protest marches and meetings - I went on a fair few marches for women’s rights when I was a teenager. Would I have actually taken militant action? I’m not sure I’d have been brave enough to break windows, but I think I’d have done some chalking.

4. What was the most rebellious thing you ever did at school?
I got sent home for swearing once, which I wouldn’t recommend. And I sometimes got into trouble for reading and talking and laughing in class. But I was actually pretty well behaved, as a rule. I had a pretty good time at Dominican College, and I’m still good friends with my best friends from school.

5. What age were you when you became aware/interested in the suffragettes and women’s rights?
I can’t remember how old I was when I first heard of the suffragettes, but my mother always did tell my sisters and me how important it was for us to vote, because women had died for that right. I was always interested in feminist issues but I really started identifying myself strongly as a feminist when I was about 16, in 1992.

6. Who are your favourite writers?
I have too many to count! My favourite writers for young people are Antonia Forest, Noel Streatfeild, Diana Wynne-Jones, Tove Jansson, E. Nesbit, Hilary McKay and Helen Cresswell.

7. What was your favourite book when you were a child?
A Little Princess by Frances Hodgson Burnett. I used to read it aloud to make myself cry. And I named my diary Sara after Sara Crewe.

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Book Info


256 pages
Interest Age: From 10


Anna Carey
More books by Anna Carey


O'Brien Press Ltd

Publication date

1st February 2011




Publisher Profile

O'Brien Press Ltd is an imprint of O'Brien


The O'Brien Press is Ireland's leading general publisher of both adult and children's books. Our list covers a huge range, including biography, humour, photography, history, art, fiction, politics, cookery, sport, music, memoir, true crime and travel and we are constantly expanding into new and exciting areas.

Publisher's Website

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