A respectful biography of King that describes his youth, significant influences, and early Movement domination, plays down the mid-Sixties opposition, and dwells extensively (as the title indicates) on the theories of his assassination. The biographical section includes childhood distinctions, adolescent distractions (which conflicted with the demands of the ministry), and the gradual assumption of leadership. Haskins ignores neither Hoover's blatant hostility nor the FBI bugging (although he doesn't specify what was overheard), but he fails to acknowledge the extent of the challenge from Malcolm (unmentioned), the Panthers, and others. The last section--a third of the book--follows habitual liar James Earl Ray through the months before the assassination and examines numerous theories of his involvement, using his own testimony and recanting and the works of other authors. These speculations, which require a highly attentive reader, distinguish this most recent life of King from comparable juvenile biographies, such as Edward Preston's Martin Luther King (1968).