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"Brother Ray: Ray Charles' Own Story" by Ray Charles and David Ritz

Updated: Jan 30, 2020

PUBLISHER: Doubleday

PUBLISHED DATE: October 1, 1978

ISBN: 978-0385270236


Ray Charles is a trip.

He's a country boy at heart, strongly independent, creative, flirtatious, and larger than life. This book truly captures the essence of Mr. Charles. I laughed, cried, and marveled at so many incredible events in his life.

Born in Georgia in 1930, raised in Florida, Mr. Charles didn't see his blindness as a hindrance, and lived an exceptional life creating timeless music, entertaining people all over the world, and enjoying the company of beautiful women. I won't describe all the details of his life, though they are fascinating. I felt like he was sitting with me cracking up and telling me all about his journey. I could just see him throwing his head back and slapping his knees remembering some of the highlights of his life. And though he had many highs like riding a motorcycle, driving a car, becoming a father, and traveling, he also experienced some extreme lows like the death of his mother at 15, the death of his older brother at the age of 7, losing his eyesight completely shortly after that, and trying to kick his heroin habit as an adult.

I read this book as part of the Hype Lit Book Club's April 2018 Book Challenge where we are reading books written by people who have a disability in honor of National Autism Awareness Month.

Recommendation: Read it!

Audience: Millennials and Up

*I borrowed this book from my library Overdrive account.

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