Essence Bestseller, Crystal Lacey Winslow, Debuts Highly Anticipated Street-Lit Anthology, MENACE II SOCIETY

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Street-lit/hip-hop lit anthology, MENACE II SOCIETY – a compilation of five short stories written by the industry’s top street and urban authors. It is the first urban anthology to feature a four male, one female ensemble. Isadore Johnson, Mark Anthony, Crystal Lacey Winslow, Al-Saadiq Banks, and J.M. Benjamin with a foreward by Shannon Holmes.

Crystal Lacey Winslow, Essence magazine bestselling author and founder of the small press company, Melodrama Publishing, releases its first ever, highly anticipated, street-lit anthology, Menace II Society (ISBN: 0-9717021-7-9; $15/U.S.) – a compilation of five short stories written by the industry’s top street and urban authors. It is the first urban anthology to feature a four male, one female ensemble.

Isadore Johnson, Mark Anthony, Crystal Lacey Winslow, Al-Saadiq Banks, and J.M. Benjamin have written stories with fast-paced action, high-crime drama, and gritty-hood realism that are sure to create an adrenaline rush more commonly associated with movie watching than story reading. Menance II Society opens with a foreward by acclaimed author Shannon Holmes (B-More Careful, Bad Girlz) in which he breaks down the difference in the commercialization of street life portrayed in our advertising and media world to the rawness of the real streets of which he, as well as the other five authors in this anthology, have personally experienced.

Crystal Lacey Winslow, coined by her fans as the “Quentin Tarantino of urban literature” decided to publish a street lit/hip-hop lit anthology after many requests from her fans to write more on the street characters incorporated in her stories and an innocent discussion with a colleague that ended up lending his talent to the project. “One day I was talking with Al-Saadiq Banks and I told him that I wanted to publish a street anthology. He encouraged me to move forward, not knowing that I had him in mind as one of the writers. I chose these authors because I admire their work. All of them are vicious with their pen game.”

Like hip-hop music, street lit is now recognized as an authentic voice that is here to stay and not just a fad. According to Publisher’s Weekly “Street lit -- or hip-hop books -- is the hottest item in literature right now.”

The Deceitful; Hunted by Isadore Johnson (Drug Dealer Part 1& 2) tells the story of Quawi Ubati’s desperation to hold on to his billion dollar cocaine empire built by blood and fear that has led him to hunt down two men responsible for the ultimate betrayal. This notorious Nigerian drug lord unleashes havoc, that not even the powerful F.B.I. could withstand, in order to find and kill these individuals who he once trusted before planning the ultimate escape.

Snake Eyes by Mark Anthony (Essence bestsellers-Paper Chasers, Dogism, Lady’s Night) is about keeping your friends close and your enemies closer. That’s the old adage in the ’hood. But what happens when your friend is your enemy? All hell breaks loose in Snake Eyes. Mark Anthony weaves a dramatic street tale that will leave you on the edge of your seat.

Cagney & Lacey by Crystal Lacey Winslow (Essence bestsellers-Life, Love, & Loneliness; The Criss Cross) - when two felons growing up on opposite coasts meet—the attraction is magnetic. When Lacey’s past comes back to haunt her—Cagney’s love is put to the test. Will Cagney ride or die for his lady? Just like a modern day Bonnie and Clyde, these two embark on a killing spree in the name of love and in their quest to leave the past behind.

Walk With Me by Al-Saadiq Banks (No Exit, Block Party, Sincerely Yours and Caught ’em Slippin’) - Newark, New Jersey is eager to get rid of the infamous, Miracle. A predicate with a long list of felonious crimes. When he’s arrested for the brutal murders of his two co-defendants, he realized that his life is over. Walk with Me walks you through the seemingly dark life of Miracle, capturing the ironic circumstance of being in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Keepin’ It Gangsta by J.M. Benjamin (Down In The Dirty) written while incarcerated, his story: Keepin’ it Gangsta is the only way the notorious “Dicer” knows how to live. Feared by many because of his murderous and infamous reputation, he still finds a soft spot in his black heart to hold down the only woman that ever truly loved him. But in true “Dicer” fashion down to the very last second, he can only keep it gangsta.

About Melodrama Publishing

Founded by author, Crystal Lacey Winslow in 2001, Melodrama Publishing is an African-American owned small press company located in New York City whose mission is to maintain, publish, and create quality novels designed to enlighten, educate and entertain the public. In 2004, Crystal Lacey Winslow was named Self Publisher of the Year by Black Issues Book Review. Now, Melodrama Publishing currently has 7 titles in its catalog with more releases to come in the very near future – Essence bestselling novels: Wifey by KiKi Swinson ($15), The Criss Cross ($15), and Life, Love & Loneliness ($15) – both by Ms. Winslow as well as I’m Still Wifey (the follow-up to Wifey-$15) by KiKi Swinson, A Twisted Tale of Karma, by Amaleka McCall ($15), Up Close& Personal (an intimate book of poetry by Ms. Winslow - $9.95), and Menace II Society ($15). Melodrama Publishing, and Ms. Winslow have been featured in Black Enterprise, VIBE, Upscale,, Black Issues Book Review, Today's Black Woman, BET Nightly News, Essence, NY Daily News, Black Hairstyles & Trends and

TITLE:         Menace II Society

PUBLISHER:        Melodrama Publishing, LLC.

PUBLISH DATE:    February 13, 2006

PRICE:        $15 U.S. / $21 Canada

ISBN #:        0-9717021-7-9

For more information on Melodrama Publishing and Crystal Lacey Winslow visit For press inquiries please contact, Katrina Boswell of Kat Walk Media, Inc. at 212.465.3375

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