Farmington Hills girl reviews books that include children of color for online blog

An 11-year-old book critic from Farmington Hills is on a mission to diversify bookshelves across America.

In the blog she writes, Elena reviews stories that include children of color, Hilary spoke with her today.

"In my teacher's library, main characters were white," she said. "I just wanted to see a lot of books that had, maybe a black character like me, or a biracial character like me, in books."

When Elena was 9 years old, she realized she was not okay with the lack of minority representation in the books she was reading.

"I just want a lot of teachers, parents to come to my blog, and find a book that they can maybe see themselves in," she said. "Because their stories matter and they matter."

"When I review books I always think about what person or Kid would see themselves in."

Elena is a book critic and at 11 years old, she has been offering her opinion on literature for two years now. Her friend's mom, who is an author, planted a seed.

"She said, 'Elena, you love reading, so maybe you can somehow showcase that in the world,'" she said.

Her blog, was born. It offers her readers a look at a myriad of titles, rated with roses. Reviews that are likely a prelude to her dream of becoming an author.

Elena has reviewed 100 books and interviewed more than 20 authors and illustrators.  

"I love that writing is just another way to express yourself, I love it when my pen goes to paper, I can do anything, I can imagine a whole new world," she said. "I read every day, at night, reading is a daily part of my life. Every time I read a book, I try to get the review in, get it into the blog, edit it and then, hopefully, publish it. 

"When everyone learns that they matter and everyone else matters, then the world will really be in harmony," she said. "It's a great way to bring people together."

See her blog here: