The Sidekick

Benjamin Markovits

An unforgettable novel about basketball and race, friendship and envy, and the powerful divide that separates greatness from ordinary life.

147 in stock

Date Published
All orders are sent via Royal Mail and are tracked: choose from standard or premium delivery.

The perfect novel for fans of The Last Dance, Hoop Dreams and Winning Time

‘Warm, humane, and tragic … Somewhere in a golden triangle between Frederick Exley’s A Fan’s Notes, Richard Ford’s The Sportswriter, and David Shields’ Black Planet.’ JONATHAN LETHEM

What seperates greatness from ordinary life?

At his high school basketball try-outs, nerdy sports-obsessed Brian Blum meets new kid Marcus Hayes. What neither of them knows when they line up at the end of practice to shoot free throws is that Marcus will soon be living with the Blums, following his parents’ messy break-up, and that he will go on to become an NBA star, the next Michael Jordan.

As sportswriter Brian spends the following twenty years tracking his friends’ career, he remains Marcus’ only link to his pre-fame life. And, as Marcus mounts his comeback after a couple of years out of the game, both men must face the tensions and disappointments of getting older.

The Sidekick is the story of a friendship, of two lives bound together but fundamentally different, and of what it’s like to live your life in the shadow of greatness.

Critic Reviews

‘Evokes a tender nostalgia for the simple camaraderie of youth.’

The Times
Critic Reviews

‘There is something so compelling about the questions of whether these two friends, despite their fraught history and hefty egos, will rekindle a genuine connection . . . you’ll want to know how the game turns out.’

Critic Reviews

‘Compelling and emotionally resonant.’

Critic Reviews

‘Explores the telling of a player’s last dance narrative.’

Irish Times

Benjamin Markovits grew up in Texas, London and Berlin. He is the author of eleven novels, including Either Side of Winter, You Don’t Have To Live Like This, and Christmas in Austin. He has published essays, stories, poetry and reviews on subjects ranging from the Romantics to American sports in the Guardian, Granta, The Paris Review and The New York…

Read More
More books by Benjamin Markovits