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Now in paperback, the story of "Hot Karl," the Jewish kid from the LA suburbs who became a rap battling legend-and then almost became a star

About the Author

JENSEN KARP, formerly known as rapper Hot Karl, is an LA-based writer, comedian, and co-owner of Gallery 1988, the nation's leading destination for pop culture themed artwork. He hosts the "Get Up On This" podcast on the Earwolf network, cohosts the Web series "Baby Talk," and has written and produced for "Funny Or Die," MTV VMAs, HelloGiggles, Rolling Stone, WWE Raw, The Hundreds, and the ESPYs. As an actor, he's appeared on VH1's Barely Famous and Candidly Nicole.


"Karp has a gift for crafting portraits of hip-hop stars that are as funny and revealing as they are succinct, and his take on a pre-fame West is funny but also, like much of the rest of the book, surprisingly emotional and poignant. . . . A book that is something special."-AV Club

"A superbly unsentimental chronicle of growing up in the '90s as a white kid who loved rap more than anything. It's a classic L.A. redemption story of an artist narrowly missing stardom and failing at his first dream, but surviving to write his own second act, and ultimately, one of the best hip-hop memoirs in years."-LA Weekly

"If the title doesn't grab your attention, the story definitely will."-PopSugar

"Hilarious."-Harper's Bazaar
(Must Read Books for Summer)

"Funny, irreverent . . . There's plenty of juicy anecdotes, celebrity gossip, and shady industry dealings."-GQ

"The funniest person I follow on Twitter finally got smart and wrote about his unlikely-and hilarious-odyssey as teenage rapper Hot Karl. Karp's sharp wit and gossipy giggles keep you turning pages, but what lingers is the story of a survivor. This book should be mandatory reading for or anyone who has ever wanted to be famous."-Kevin Smith, New York Times bestselling author of Tough Sh*t

"If I had kids, I'd read passages from this to them at night. Rap careers definitely haven't been explored from this perspective, and I'm excited to see the ripples. Jensen's gonna make some enemies, though. I've been on television."-Hannibal Buress

"I remember hearing faint whispers about a white kid on the west coast who got like the craziest deal ever from some radio freestyles or some shit. But we never saw anything concrete, so I assumed he was hip-hop's Bigfoot and left it at that. Who knew it was real??!!! This is the story of the rap game's Sasquatch."-Bun B, Grammy-nominated rapper

"Jensen's story is so funny and so well-written that it's impossible there's any truth to it."-Kay Cannon, writer, Pitch Perfect and 30 Rock

"Sure, everyone is curious to know what it's like to be a white rapper, but only Jensen Karp has the wit and humility to reveal what it was like to get knocked down by the music industry, dust off his Cross Colours, and keep moving."-Paul Scheer

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