Posted in Young Adult Lit

Geography Club, by Brent Hartinger

94072Geography Club
Brent Hartinger
2004 Harper Teen
ISBN – 9780060012236
Genre – Realistic Fiction
Age – High School
4 Stars

Russel Middlebrook lives in a small town, and he is pretty sure he is the only gay kid in his high school. Then one evening he is searching through LGBT chat rooms, and finds someone from his school. His new online friend turns out to be the most popular guy in school! Soon he finds out that they are not alone, even one of his best friends is bisexual. The group is desperate to find a forum in which they can talk about important issues in their lives, but how can do this without letting everyone know. This new found group of friends decides to start the Geography Club. They can meet at school in relative secret, because lets face it, who would want to join a Geography Club?!?!

I like this book because it does not glorify high school, it doesn’t glorify being different in high school. Let’s face it, being a teen isn’t always easy. It is not all fun and games, and not everyone is chipper and nice all the time. But honestly, it isn’t always the end of the world either. Hartinger is able to show the hardships of being different, without being overdramatic. I like his characters, they are realistic. Everyone has their good days and their bad days, some days we are proud of ourselves and some days we are ashamed of our actions. None of his characters are unrealistically amazing all of the time. I also really like that his characters are from all walks of life. He has boy jocks, and girl jocks, brainiacs, outcasts, and your average overlooked teen. They all play a part in shaping each other’s lives and feelings about themselves. It is a very good look at the sociology of high school life!

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