Street Kingdom: Five Years Inside the Franklin Avenue Posse

Front Cover
Warner Books, 1999 - Social Science - 415 pages
2 Reviews
From a debut author whose work invites comparisons to Norman Mailer, Hunter S. Thompson, and Richard Price comes an inside portrait of the Franklin Avenue Posse, one of Brooklyn's most-feared street crews. It began as a chance encounter - the night in 1992 when Douglas Century, a white, Ivy League-educated journalist, met Big K, a young streetwise hip-hop artist, at a nightclub on Manhattan's Lower East Side. Gradually, under Big K's aegis, Century was drawn deep into the urban vortex portrayed in the rapper's remarkable lyrics. Becoming K's confidant and sounding board, Century found himself riding shotgun with the Posse and hearing their untold story - how, a decade ago, at the height of New York's crackwars, K and his Crown Heights crew "stood knee-deep in drug money" and kept an entire borough "runnin' red." Now, through Century's affecting present-tense narrative, we see both Big K's brutal past and his life today - juggling the pursuit of a rap career and his daytime security jobs, all the time walking the difficult line that separates "straight life" and the street. We meet K's crew of "hardrocks" - Brooklynese for "gangstas" - former stickup kids, gunrunners, and coke dealers in the eerie, ink-black Brooklyn night. And we enter New York's infamous juvenile prisons where frightened children become hardened badmen...and travel inside the maximum-security penitentiaries like Sing Sing and Clinton where Posse members are still serving time.

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Review: Street Kingdom: Five Years Inside the Franklin Avenue Posse

User Review  - Cecile - Goodreads

The author straddles two worlds quite eloquently and deftly. His sense of humor is quite wry and that is rare to find in a nonfiction piece. Read full review

Review: Street Kingdom: Five Years Inside the Franklin Avenue Posse

User Review  - Laurie - Goodreads

I just can't believe these guys befriended each other for real. Read full review

About the author (1999)

William Queen is the author of the "New York Times" bestseller "Under and Alone" and "Armed and Dangerous," He spent twenty years as a special agent with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms. A Vietnam veteran, Queen devoted his career to law enforcement, serving first as a local police officer and then as a U.S. Border Patrol agent before joining ATF. He is among the country's foremost experts on the violent world of outlaw motorcycle gangs and has lectured widely to law-enforcement organizations in multiple countries. For his ground-breaking undercover work playing the part of biker "Billy St. John," William Queen was awarded the 2001 Federal Bar Association's Medal of Valor.
Douglas Century is the author of "Barney Ross and Street Kingdom," the co-author of the "New York Times" bestsellers" Under and Alone "and "Takedown," and a contributing writer for "The New York Times," His nonfiction work has appeared in such publications as "Details, Rolling Stone, Men's Journal, New York, Vibe, Radar, Blender, Newsday," and "The Guardian," Century is a cum laude graduate of Princeton University. He lives in New York City.

"From the Hardcover edition.

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