On Wednesday afternoon, 11-year-old Bronx resident, Audrey Hall was honored on the field of Yankee Stadium for an award-winning essay. Slate reports that her essay was chosen as one of few winners of the New York Public Library’s Summer Reading 2019 Essay Contest.
Inspired by Sharon Draper’s Blended, Audrey explains how she related with the main character who is also mixed and has divorced parents. She discusses the daily struggles she faces along with future struggles such as choosing her ethnic identification.
“Sometimes I wish they could find a better word to describe people like me,” Audrey wrote when thinking about how she’ll have to check-off the ‘other’ box on future job applications.
At the same time, she says this book expanded her universe for discovering there are kids just like her — facing similar hardships.
“This book made me feel like I belong. It helped accept who I am as a person,” she wrote.