Reinberger Review: Dark Was the Night: Blind Willie Johnson’s Journey to the Stars

Audience: 5-8 years

Review by Sarah Bihn (she/her)

MLIS Student, Kent State University iSchool

Gary Golio and E. B. Lewis bring the story of blues musician Blind Willie Johnson to life with rolling prose and imaginative watercolors. Inspiring while also somber, this book reminds all readers that even in the darkest moments there is still light. This book is also the perfect way to introduce young readers to blues and science, with facts about the Voyager I introducing the story of Blind Willie Johnson. The back matter includes more information about the Voyager I and its mission.

The beautiful illustrations make you feel as if you were taking the journey along with Voyager I and captures the imaginations of young and old readers alike. While reading, I could not help but wonder about life in space and what the reactions would be of any who discover Voyager I. Would they hear the notes of Blind Willie Johnson and be curious about the creators of the probe and the gifts it carries?

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