Part of Quickish coverage throughout 2011 has been tracking the big book releases. Here is a list of the most recommended and notable sports books of the past year:
Those Guys Have All The Fun (James Miller and Tom Shales): Must-read sports book of the year.
New in paperback this week.
The Art of Fielding (Chad Harbach): Already earns a place in the sports-novel canon.
The Extra 2% (Jonah Keri): Moneyball 2.0? How the Rays became the new A’s.
Scorecasting (Moskowitz and Werthiem): Freakonomics x Sports
Wonder Girl (Don Van Natta): The story of the greatest female athlete ever.
Flip Flop Flyball (Craig Robinson): Brilliant and beautiful baseball infographics.
Sweetness (Jeff Pearlman): Meticulously researched account of Payton’s life.
An Accidental Sportswriter (Robert Lipsyte): Part biography, part polemic.
Bottom of the 33rd (Dan Barry): Snapshot of the most famous minor-league game ever.
West By West (Jerry West and Jonathan Coleman): Brutal catharsis from NBA legend.
The John Carlos Story (John Carlos and Dave Zirin): The conscience of sports.
Swing Your Sword (Mike Leach and Bruce Feldman): How is Leach not coaching yet?
The Whore of Akron (Scott Raab): The most polarizing sports book of the year.
Through My Eyes (Tim Tebow and Nathan Whitaker): Come on -- it’s Tebow.
When the Garden Was Eden (Harvey Araton): Way too many trusted folks said it should be here.
Looking ahead to releases in 2012:
Dream Team (Jack McCallum, July) - Most anticipated sports book of 2012.
One Shot At Forever (Chris Ballard, June) - Has been doing great longform work in SI.
Jimmy Connors' As-Yet-Untitled Autobio (June) - 2012 version of Agassi's "Open?"
Wherever I Wind Up (RA Dickey, March) - Brilliant knuckleball pitcher finally writes.
Illegal Procedure (Josh Luchs, March) - Exposing the seamy side of sports agents.
Brave Dragons (Jim Yardley) - Recommended by the great Mark Haubner.
The Last Great Game (Gene Wojciechowski, March) - Duke. Kentucky. 1992.
Imperfect (Tim Brown and Jim Abbott, April) - The life of one of the most unique athletes ever.
Damn Yankees (Dexter, McCann, Blount, Leitch et al, April) - Writers on loving/hating the team.
Solo (Hope Solo, July) - Brutally honest take by US Soccer's most controversial player.
Out of My League (Dirk Hayhurst, Feb) - Follow-up to enjoyable first book “Bullpen Gospels.”
Mathletics (Wayne Winston, March) - Mark Cuban’s stats guru takes the analysis wider.
Don't Put Me In Coach (Mark Titus, March) - Former Ohio State hoops end-of-bench cult phenom.
Over Time (Frank Deford, May) - Memoirs from the sportswriting legend.
Title TBD (Nate Jackson, September) - Life in the NFL from brilliant Deadspin/Slate expert.
Know of an interesting 2012 release worth adding? Email tips-[at]-quickish-[dot]-com.
Prediction for 2012 and the sports-book industry: Shorter-form (and quick-turnaround) e-books from "indie" publishers like Byliner and Atavist; from sportswriters publishing on their own; from mainstream publishing houses (including Amazon, foreshadowed by Emma Span and Ben Cohen); and -- most interestingly -- directly from mainstream sports media companies (taking a cue from what The Atlantic did with Taylor Branch's cover story this fall and Politico's e-book strategy, which made its first surge this week) will explode. -- Dan Shanoff