Rebel’s summer gets off to a bad start when her plan to run away to paleontologist camp fails and gets her grounded. It gets even worse when she is sent to live with her much older sister, Lynette, in her trailer–excuse me, “mobile home”–and babysit her seven year old nephew Rudy while Lynette goes to beauty school. But the summer promises to get much more interesting when Rebel a new friend decide to enter the town beauty pageant. Not only will they have the chance to beat the prissy, bossy, insufferable neighborhood beauty queen, but the $250 prize money would be more than enough to get Rebel to paleontologist camp! Unfortunately, it will take a lot more work than Rebel expected to transform her from the queen of burp-talking to the queen of the beauty pageant.
Rebel McKenzie is both humorous and touching. It will appeal to middle grade readers who like realistic fiction, particularly books about quirky characters and strange or dysfunctional families.