I’ve just started reviewing children’s books with Boolino and the first one we tried is this book about Ray Charles. It’s a lovely hardback book and it comes with a CD, which fits nicely into a little pocket at the front of the volume. This is the perfect book with which to include a CD, given that it is about the well-known musician Ray Charles. As you’d expect the CD plays a number of his songs, but also a number of songs that are seen as influences on his music. On each page in the book you are guided to the relevant tracks on the CD to listen to.
Ray Charles led an interesting life: he grew up in a segregated deep South and went blind while he was a child. The book covers the social history of this and includes some interesting pictures documenting segregation of races. It follows the story of his life and career as he moves out of the South into the more accepting North, from poverty into fame and prosperity. It’s an interesting read and certainly introduces you to the music of Ray Charles, whilst giving a flavour for the America that he grew up and lived in.