We had to read They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us by the Hanif Abdurraqib and there were no lack of good reasons to do so. It is a book that everyone we love, admire or ever knew was talking about. It reminded us of when Stories by the Scott McClanahan was first released, before he was what he would become and everywhere we went someone was talking about it. It had to be read. They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us was released by Two Dollar Radio, and while we're not quite Two Dollar Radio completists, yet, they only do good release, like really, really good, and so any release of theirs demands attention. And then there is that fucking cover, yo. Can you remember a better cover in recent history? Seriously, we're open to debate, but it's the goodness, stunning, and popping off of the shelf and straight into our brains. So, all good reasons to read They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us and all reasons we did. But, none of these are the actual reasons to read it. The reason to read it, is because it's so damn strong. That's not even a word we like to use. The meaning is so easy to twist around. But to describe They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us calls for speaking truth to its power. A terrible play on words we know. Or is it? Please let us know. It's just that for a single book to talk sports, love, race, violence, politics, culture and family as beautifully, and dammingly, as this one does. To use the filter of music, all kinds of music, music we know and love, and don't know, but still love, as a way to step into and through these ideas. For it to be so personal and so fast, slicing to the heart of whatever it is in a non-stop rat-tat-tat of beats, and stacked memories and ideas, can only speak to power, because there is so much truth here, and yes, strength. The strength of words and pain and confusion and triumph, even when that triumph is as brief as watching the arc of basketball finding nothing but the bottom of the net. If They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us isn't certain to change your life, which doesn't seem possible, it is certainly hands down the best book on what America has been and continues to be, that you can expect to read any time in the near, and not so near, future. And if They Can't Kill Us Until They Kill Us isn't required reading in high schools across the country, soon, now, than the heavy lifting required to make any kind of change any time soon, is going to be that much heavier for said future.