A prize-winning journalist and author returns to his childhood in this fictional account of the tumultuous 1960s Civil Rights era in the South. The gripping saga takes us into the heart of an Alabama town held captive by the blind hatred of the K.K.K. in a "profound and heartbreakingly real" (Kirkus) novel. The teenager's narration breathes life into that violent setting, and pays homage to the tragedies and hardships of both black and white Southerners trying to thrive in a segregationist town. Young Sonny Poe is trapped in a dead-end life of poverty and prejudice. Horrified after witnessing a lynching in the midnight woods, Sonny turns shy of anyone he suspects is a Klansman. Soon, he meets and befriends a progressive doctor with a troubled past and a crusading spirit who's trying to help end abuse against the local Negroes. The headstrong teenager commits himself to "Doctor Joe" and his cause, even as both will suffer betrayals, beatings, arrest and finally exile in a story that can only end in tragedy — and hope. This edgy thriller pulsates with violence, love, betrayal and humor on a narrative rushing us through the forebodingness of one of America's most pressing historical moments toward its shocking climax. The Civil Rights Movement forms the backbone of The Sum of His Worth, but its strength comes from the voice of its young narrator and its strongest theme lies in the caveats of moral reckoning in a "free" society.