The Basketball Diaries: Age 12-15 by Jim Carroll. Published by Bantam Books, New York, 1980. Jim Carroll grew up to become a renowned poet and punk rocker. But in this memoir of the mid-1960’s, set during his coming-of-age from 12 to 15, he was a rebellious teenager making a place and a name for himself on the unforgiving streets of New York City. During these years, he chronicled his experiences, and the result is a diary of unparalleled candor that conveys his alternately hilarious and terrifying teenage existence. Here is Carroll prowling New York City–playing basketball, hustling, stealing, getting high, getting hooked, and searching for something pure.