Thomas Pletzinger

The Great Nowitzki. The exceptional life of the basketball megastar

The Great Nowitzki

The Great Nowitzki. The exceptional life of the basketball megastar

English sample translation by Shane Anderson available
Chinese sample translation available
Translations rights handled by David Luxton Associates (Contact: Rebecca Winfield)
Including Photos by Tobias Zielony

You can’t talk about Dirk Nowitzki without using superlatives. He’s one of the legends of his sport, which he fundamentally revolutionized. Nowitzki is a global superstar – and, at the same time, he is likeable and modest. For the first time, this book – direct, knowledgeable and closely observed – tells the story of his entire career. Over the course of seven years, Thomas Pletzinger repeatedly met and followed around this exceptional athlete, becoming a part of Nowitzki’s universe. In “The Great Nowitzki” he shows us his unseen world beyond the spotlight – between airports, dusty gyms and Nowitzki’s villa in Dallas. Pletzinger asks very personal questions: What does it feel like to be booed? What was the day after the championship like? What does money mean to him? Whom can he trust? How lonely is the life of a superstar? What begins when a career ends? But he also examines the Nowitzki phenomenon from other perspectives: in conversations with those from his immediate surroundings, opponents and teammates, fans and coaches, but also with sociologists, economists and artists.
Thomas Pletzinger succeeds in capturing both a brilliant close-up of this exceptional individual and a masterful literary reportage – gripping and precisely observed – from the world of pro sports.

The sports biography “The Great Nowitzki” is an intoxicating fan chant on Basketball (ZEIT)

The story of how Nowitzki became one of the best players in the world has been told many times. But never before have they been read at such a pace as Thomas Pletzinger now presents in his book “The Great Nowitzki”. Here, you are as close to the player as a spectator with Courtside ticket; you would like to read the 500 pages with a giant rubber finger in one and a cheap beer in the other hand. (ZEIT)



ISBN: 978-3-462-04732-5
release: 22. August 2019
512 pages, gebunden mit SU


26,00 €
0,00 sFr
26,80 €

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sample translation

About the Author

Thomas Pletzinger, born in 1975, grew up in the basketball city of Hagen and spent his entire youth in gyms. Not quite destined for a career in pro sports, he instead dedicated himself to American studies in Hamburg and at the German Institute for Literature in Leipzig. His debut novel, “Bestattung eines Hundes” (“Funeral for a Dog”), came out in 2008. Subsequently, for his nonfiction book “Gentlemen, wir leben am Abgrund” (“Gentlemen, We’re Living on the Edge”) (2012), he followed the pro players of the German basketball club Alba Berlin. He recently won the Comic Book Award of the Berthold Leibinger Foundation and a work grant from the German Literature Fund. He lives with his wife and three daughters in Berlin and works as an author, journalist and translator.