has been around for years and is a go-to for almost anything you can think of. We go to it for everything from cooking to auto repairs, and now there’s a new reason — book reviews.

On May 17, local resident 11-year-old Alexandra Zakharin was finally able to start her own YouTube channel. It’s something she’s wanted to do for over a year now and had been begging her parents for permission.

Her parents Stanislav Zakharin and Catalina Alcaraz-Guzman agreed Alexandra could start a YouTube channel if it was something uplifting and positive — something that would make an impact on others. 

Alexandra Zakharin poses in her room with some of her favorite books.
Photo by Jenny Kirchner

Alexandra came to them with the idea of “Positively Alexa,” and her YouTube channel was created.

“I started the ‘Positively Alexa’ channel because I realized that it would be a great idea to share all these books that I’ve read,” Alexandra explained. “I just like the idea to be able to inspire people to read more books.”

Alexandra chooses which books she wants to read and review, writes the script and selects the music that would best compliment the video. 

After she memorizes the script, Alexandra sets up her recording equipment, does her recording, and with the help of her mom, edits the content together before uploading it to her channel. Luckily for Alexandra, her mom, Catalina, works in the Film and Media Department at Idyllwild Arts Academy.

Alexandra has reviewed “To Kill a Mockingbird” by Harper Lee, “Green Eggs and Ham” by Dr. Seuss and “Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone” by J.K. Rowling, to name a few. 

Alexandra has always been an avid reader. 

“I’ve always liked reading since I was really little,” she said. “What I like most is being able to get to know all these characters and worlds and being able to escape into the books. Most of them are fantasy, mystery or magic books.”

When I met with Alexandra and her parents over the weekend (with health and safety measures taken), she was planning to record a review of the most recent book she finished titled “The Odd 1s Out.” It’s a book written by fellow YouTuber James Rallison. 

“It’s a really interesting book,” Alexandra said. “He animates videos about stories about his life in a humorous way. This book is all of those stories with some extra things.”

Alexandra has been doing a lot of reading while being in quarantine. While she enjoys reading under normal circumstances, quarantine has provided even more time to do so.

Since she started her YouTube channel, Alexandra has done her best to review one book a week. As of print time, she had almost 700 views and already has 60 people subscribed to her channel. 

“I want to inspire people to read and support these authors,” Alexandra explained. “It’s really fun.” 

If you want to learn more, go check out Alexandra’s YouTube channel “Positively Alexa.” No matter what age you are, you can always use a little inspiration and some new reading material.