Journalist Mike Sielski will discuss his book, “The Rise: Kobe Bryant and the Pursuit of Immortality,” during a virtual talk hosted by Chaucer’s Books at 6 p.m. Feb. 1.
To attend this event on Zoom, visit us06web.zoom.us/j/83256633257.
To watch this event live and recorded on Chaucer’s YouTube channel, visit www.youtube.com/channel/UCRVxV4ZOqkmnBj8TvT25NFQ.
In “The Rise,” readers will travel from the neighborhood streets of Southwest Philadelphia — where Mr. Bryant’s father, Joe, became a local basketball standout — to the Bryant family’s isolation in Italy, where Kobe spent his formative years, to the leafy suburbs of Lower Merion, where Kobe’s legend was born.
The story will trace Mr. Bryant’s career and life at Lower Merion – he led the Aces to the 1995-96 Pennsylvania state championship, a dramatic underdog run for a team with just one star player – and the run-up to the 1996 NBA draft, where Kobe’s dream of playing pro basketball culminated in his acquisition by the Los Angeles Lakers.
In researching and writing “The Rise,” Mr. Sielski had an advantage over other writers who have attempted to chronicle Mr. Bryant’s life: access to a series of never-before-released interviews with him during his senior season and early days in the NBA. For a quarter century, these tapes and transcripts preserved Mr. Bryant’s thoughts, dreams and goals from his teenage years, and they contained insights into and told stories about him that have never been revealed before.
Mr. Sielski is a columnist for The Philadelphia Inquirer and author. The Associated Press Sports Editors voted him the country’s top sports columnist in 2015, and his previous book, “Fading Echoes: A True Story of Rivalry and Brotherhood from the Football Field to the Fields of Honor,” was published in 2009. He lives in Bucks County, Pa., with his wife and two sons.