Shea Serrano, author of "Basketball and Other Things" Event
At its most basic level, 'The Rap Year Book,' by Shea Serrano, who used rap to teach science to middle school students in Houston, is a series of essays and illustrations discussing and debating the best rap song of each year, from to November 5, Few people thought "The Rap Year Book" would do well. In fact, few people even knew about it, at first. After all, it's a nonfiction graphic novel in the musical genre, by a relatively young, unknown writer who himself expressed apprehension that the book would sell. The book has done gangbusters.
Don't have an account yet? Get the most out of your experience with a personalized all-access pass to everything local on events, music, restaurants, news and more. In his latest book, Basketball and Other Things , Shea Serrano asks silly sometimes absurd questions about the NBA and then tests those out to the extreme. For instance, in one chapter, Serrano, a Houston Press alum and now a staff writer for the sports and pop-culture website The Ringer , asks what would happen if a bear swapped places with NBA great Karl Malone for a season? The joke does not end there. We must first establish ground rules. The bear is a black bear.
The distance between authors and readers, fans and the sources of their fandom, is shorter than ever. Instead, over the intervening months, that scene played itself out over and over and over again. People were buying the book for themselves and their friends, buying multiple copies just because, buying the Kindle edition to read while they waited for their hard copy to arrive. One woman bought a dozen copies and gave them away to random Twitter followers. By the time the book released, Amazon was sold out. Barnes and Noble sold out soon after.