Brent Hartinger

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Brent Hartinger
Born 1971 (age 44–45)
Occupation Author, playwright, screenwriter
Nationality American
Literary movement Gay teen fiction
Notable works Geography Club
Partner Michael Jensen

Brent Hartinger (born 1971) is an American author, playwright, and screenwriter, best known for his novels about gay teenagers.

Early life[edit]

Hartinger was born in 1971 in Washington State and grew up in Tacoma, Washington. He earned a bachelor's degree from Gonzaga University in Spokane, Washington, and studied for a masters in psychology at Western Washington University.


Hartinger has published eleven novels.[1]

His first novel was Geography Club, about a gay teenager named Russel Middlebrook. It has been challenged in some American schools, including a school in Hartinger's home town of Tacoma.[2]

Hartinger subsequently wrote three young adult sequels to Geography Club, which made up The Russel Middlebrook Series. A second series of books, Russel Middlebrook: the Futon Years, features Russel Middlebrook in his mid-twenties.[3]

A feature film version of Geography Club, starring Scott Bakula, Nikki Blonski, Ana Gasteyer, Cameron Deane Stewart, and Justin Deeley, was released in 2013.[4]

Hartinger is the author of many plays, including a stage adaptation of Geography Club, which has received regional productions in Tacoma, Salt Lake City, Edmonton, and elsewhere. A feature film version of his play The Starfish Scream, which has also received many regional productions (and was twice produced Off-Off Broadway in New York), is in active development.

Hartinger's other books include Project Sweet Life, Grand & Humble, The Last Chance Texaco, and Shadow Walkers. Forthcoming books include two thrillers: Three Truths and a Lie and The Divide (co-written with Michael Jensen).[5]

Hartinger is a sometime-member of the faculty of Vermont College's MFA program.[1] He also once taught creative writing at Tacoma School of the Arts.

Hartinger co-founded the gay entertainment website with Michael Jensen and Sarah Warn. The site was sold to MTV/Viacom in 2006.[6]

Personal life[edit]

Hartinger lives in Seattle with his husband, novelist and writer Michael Jensen.[7] In 1990, he helped co-found Oasis, one of the nation's first support organization for gay teens, in his hometown of Tacoma, Washington. He is a co-founder of AS IF! Authors Support Intellectual Freedom, a group of Young Adult authors supporting intellectual freedom. He also worked as a counselor at a youth group home.[1]


Geography Club is Hartinger's first novel.

The Russel Middlebrook Series (a young adult series):

  • Geography Club (2003)
  • The Order of the Poison Oak (2005)
  • Double Feature: Attack of the Soul-Sucking Brain Zombies/Bride of the Soul-Sucking Brain Zombies (2007)
  • The Elephant of Surprise (2013)
  • Two Thousand Pounds Per Square Inch (2014)

Russel Middlebrook: The Futon Years (an adult series)

  • The Thing I Didn't Know I Didn't Know (2014)
  • Barefoot in the City of Broken Dreams (2015)
  • The Road to Amazing (2016)

Other Books:

  • The Last Chance Texaco (2004)
  • Grand & Humble (2006)
  • Project Sweet Life (2009)
  • Shadow Walkers (2011)
  • Three Truths and a Lie (2016)
  • The Divide (2017)



  1. ^ a b c d "Brent's Brain: Pressroom". Retrieved 2007-03-27. 
  2. ^ "School District Bans Novel About Gay Teenagers". Associated Press. 2005-11-21. Retrieved 2007-03-27. 
  3. ^ "Brent's Brain: Questions That Haunt Me". Retrieved 2012-10-20. 
  4. ^ "IMDB: Geography Club". Retrieved 2012-10-21. 
  5. ^ "Brent's Brain: Pressroom". Retrieved 2012-10-21. 
  6. ^ "Brent's Brain: Who Am I". Retrieved 2012-10-21. 
  7. ^ "Picture of Hartinger's marriage license from his Facebook page". Retrieved 2013-12-04. 

External links[edit]