Over two months after his sudden passing, Kobe Bryant’s new book “Season One” has been released.
The book is a follow-up to his New York Times Best Seller “The Wizenard Series: Training Camp,” which focuses on a basketball player named Reggie, who dreams of superstardom.
Kobe's Instagram was updated for the first time since his death. A post read, “Welcome back to Dren! We hope you are all ready to catch up with the West Bottom Badgers for another magical basketball season. The #Wizenard Series: Season One is OUT NOW.🧡🧡🧡.”
Kobe’s wife Vanessa also shared the same post on her Instagram.
The book’s author Wesley King tweeted, “Official release day. Bittersweet without my collaborator, but grateful to see the words live on. This is a book about chasing your dreams."
King recently opened up on his friendship with Bryant, telling People magazine, “His family was first and foremost… I knew that within five minutes of meeting him. His daughters were always brought up [and] he was forever calling me while waiting in line to pick them up.”
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This photo is from the first day we met in 2016. I slowly walked into his office—he looked like a super villain with an enormous picture of a black mamba hanging on the wall—and I remember thinking that I probably shouldn’t have dressed for a men’s softball game. Why didn’t you wear a sport coat, idiot. Pants would have been smart. It’s the bloody black mamba. “Uh…hey—” I started, thinking harder. Do we shake? He can’t be a hugger, right? Do I have a witty comment about basketball on hand? The meaning of life? Oh shit, he’s getting up. “My man!” he says, coming around the desk. Side Hug. I’ll be damned. “You ready?” he asks. I wasn’t. I mean, I didn’t even know what we were doing yet. But for the first and certainly not the last time, that didn’t matter. His energy hit me like a wave. “You know I am.” It was the beginning of three-and-a-half years of collaboration, friendship, and for me, a constant sense of awe as I watched this man face the world with a self-assurance that seemed impossible. Kobe was elemental. A giant. He’d call me at like five in the morning and say, “My man, just read the draft. You killed it. Brilliant. But listen…the walls are blue, right? That’s fine. But they also need to be red.” And I’d be all groggy and say, “Kobe, I don’t even think that’s possible—” “Anything is possible, brother! I believe in you. Crush it!” And I’d pause and think and say, “Well…color might be an abstract concept—” “My man!” We’d hang up, he’d send me a 💪. I’d sent one back. I didn’t even know there was a flexing arm emoticon before I met him, but soon I was flexing up everywhere. He had me metaphysically jacked. He was the hype man to end all hype men. We were bro’ing out, and I don’t even think either one of us was a bro. But, man, I got to bro out for almost four years with Kobe freaking Bryant. It was awesome. He made me want to be better every single time we spoke. I’m going to miss that. That was his magic. He believed in himself, sure, but he believed in you too, whoever the hell you are. Everyone. He truly believed that every single one of us has the power to change the world. I think he was right. And I’m (continues in the comment below)
King stressed, “He was really focused on changing kids’ lives and empowering the next generation of young athletes, especially females.”
As for what Kobe believed in, Wesley said, “It almost sounds cliché, but he’d say, ‘If one kid picks this book up and finds the faith in himself to persevere, we did our job…' We’re doing this for that one kid.”
Though Bryant has passed away, King is confident his legacy will be forever. He explained, “His words, which he was able to thankfully leave in innumerable interviews and also in his books, films and stories, and his legacy are going to live on. He would take great solace that his mission is still being accomplished.”
In late January, Kobe and his 13-year-old daughter Gianna perished with seven others in a helicopter crash on their way to a basketball game in Calabasas.