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Sports fans will find plenty to like at Kentucky Book Fair — basketball legends and sports journalists


Everyone knows that Kentucky loves basketball. This year’s edition of the Kentucky Book Fair on Saturday, November 17 will feature former players, coaches, and journalists telling stories of glory and scandal from sports history in the commonwealth. Fans and readers can meet them all at the Kentucky Horse Park’s Alltech Arena from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
 
Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer Artis Gilmore will sign his autobiography Here Comes the A-Train! Following a stellar collegiate career and Gardner-Webb and Jacksonville University, Gilmore joined the American Basketball Association (ABA) Kentucky Colonels. After five All-Star seasons with the Kentucky Colonels, Gilmore was the first overall pick of the 1976 ABA Dispersal draft. During his professional career, he was an eleven-time All-Star, the ABA Rookie of the Year, and ABA MVP. Gilmore will be featured on the University of Kentucky Main Stage, in conversation with former teammate Dan Issel and sports analyst Mike Pratt at 2 p.m.

Former University of Kentucky, international, and WNBA player Valerie Still will sign her newest book, Playing Black & Blue: Still I Rise. Still’s legacy began as the University of Kentucky’s all-time leading scorer and rebounder (men or women), a record she still holds. She is a recent nominee to the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame and the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame. Her memoir is a personal narrative and in-depth reflection on her life, and a thoughtful examination of the history of women’s basketball, University of Kentucky sports, and of race, class, gender, and religion in America.
 
The University Press of Kentucky has published Doug Brunk’s second book about Kentucky men’s basketball, entitled Forty Minutes to Glory: Inside the Kentucky Wildcats’ 1978 Championship Season. Brunk, former Kentucky assistant coach Dick Parsons, Jay “The Blond Bomber” Shidler, and James Lee will participate in a panel discussion about the 1978 championship season, moderated by former WKYT sportscaster Rob Bromley, at 1 p.m. in the Kentucky Book Fair’s Lindsey Wilson Room. The panelists, and former student manager Rob Bolton will also join Brunk to sign books.
 
New York Times Magazine writer Michael Sokolove has written what will surely become the touchstone text of the 2017 Louisville men’s basketball scandal, The Last Temptation of Rick Pitino: A Story of Corruption, Scandal, and the Big Business of College Basketball. Sokolove, who is the author of four previous books, and co-author of two books with Coach John Calipari, presents a “professionally done and a valuable guide through UofL’s three-year trip to hell and back,” according to sports journalist Billy Reed. Reed will interview Sokolove on stage in the Lindsey Wilson Room at 12 noon.

Reed himself has a new autobiography, Last of a BReed: A Legendary Kentucky Writer’s Journey Through Six Decades of Sports and Journalism which will be available for purchase at the Kentucky Book Fair.
 
“Important stories of triumph, struggle, and inspiration have emerged from the simple game of basketball,” Brunk said. “This team sport unites Kentuckians unlike anything else and is the topic of year-round conversation among people from all walks of life. The Kentucky Book Fair will be great day to celebrate and learn more about Kentucky’s basketball heritage.”
 
The 37th annual Kentucky Book Fair is the anchor event of the Kentucky Book Festival, taking place November 12-17. The Kentucky Book Festival would not be possible without its sponsors, donors, and community partners. More information on the Festival, including a full list of sponsors, events, and authors can be found at the website or by calling (859) 257-5932.


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