Every instinct Chris McAndrew developed growing up tells him the safe course for a white football player who supports racial integration at Shortridge High is to hold his tongue until he graduates and leaves his railroad town for college.
That's what girlfriend Susan Marks wants him to do. It's what town patriarch Grampy Harvard demands.
But Monteenia, his family maid, sends him to school each morning with breakfast and a clean shirt. Malachi Stevens, the new teammate he comes to respect, gets a raw deal from their coaches. And Mr. Cooper, the glee club director, risks his job for his singers.
Chris knows where his loyalties lie, but will he pay the price to honor them?
Through the Heart of the South blends Kathryn Stockett's The Help, exploring the South's convoluted racial mores around domestic servants, with Pat Conroy's The Lords of Discipline about life in a culture that demands rigid conformity.