elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle) wrote,

Michael Harmon (born 1969)

"I was born in Los Angeles in 1969, and spent my pre-teen years skateboarding, racing my BMX bike around the block, going to the beach, playing baseball, eating bologna sandwiches, hiking in the Sierra Nevada Mountains, hunting and four wheeling at our cabin in the Mohave Desert with my brothers, uncles, cousins and father, and reading everything from The Hobbit to the Hardy Boys to Curious George.

As a teen, my parents moved us from the suburbs of Los Angeles to Spokane, Washington. Culture shock ensued. Snow. More trucks than I could count. Dust instead of smog. Pine trees instead of palm trees, farms instead of sprawl. Where we had to drive for hours in California to reach the outdoors, Spokane was a small island in an ocean of outdoor opportunity, and our family fit right in.

Hunting, shooting, dirt biking, backpacking, fly fishing, and once again, reading, were a mainstay and a salvation in my life through the dark years of high school before I dropped out, with the one gleaming jewel found in those busy halls being my then girlfriend and now wife of sixteen years, Kimberly. You’ll find her referenced in just about every book I write; an ode to a woman with the stamina and love to put up with a guy like me for so dang long.

At 37 and with two teenagers, I write novels, backpack, fish, target shoot with compound bow and pistol, and love woodworking. The outdoors is my peace, and our cabin, named The River, is my sanity.

My other hobbies include spending time with my children, cooking, building half-pipes with my son, gaming first person shooters with him, trying to keep up with the overwhelming schedule of my fifteen year old daughter, reading, listening to Ted Nugent, old school Kiss, Metallica, Judas Priest, Van Halen and all the other good stuff, playing poker and sitting on the front porch with my wife talking about life as the dusk shadows itself with the night. Things that make my life complete."

He has effectively translated his own high school frustrations, anger, resentment and rebellion into fiction. In Skate, The Last Exit to Normal, and his latest, Brutal, Mike offers an insightful view into the realistic lives of teenage boys and girls. You'll fine a theme of self-reliance in every book he writes and every school presentation he makes, as he believes that independence, resolve, and belief in oneself to be hallmarks of success. Mike is eager to share his story and his passion for writing: "I write because I know what it feels like to be lost in a place where you should be found, and I know what it's like to make mistakes." (He is also available for teacher presentations where he addresses various approaches to reluctant readers/writers.)

Source: http://www.booksbyharmon.com/

Further Readings:

The Last Exit to Normal by Michael Harmon
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Laurel Leaf (September 8, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 044023994X
ISBN-13: 978-0440239949
Amazon: The Last Exit to Normal
Amazon Kindle: The Last Exit to Normal

“An excellent read.”—School Library Journal, Starred

It's true: After 17-year-old Ben’s father announces he’s gay and the family splits apart, Ben does everything he can to tick him off: skip school, smoke pot, skateboard nonstop, get arrested. But he never thinks he’ll end up yanked out of his city life and plunked down into a small Montana town with his dad and Edward, the Boyfriend. As if it’s not bad enough living in a hick town with spiked hair, a skateboard habit, and two dads, he soon realizes something’s not quite right with Billy, the boy next door. He’s hiding a secret about his family, and Ben is determined to uncover it and set things right. In an authentic, unaffected, and mordantly funny voice, Michael Harmon tells the compelling story of an uprooted and uncomfortable teenaged guy trying to fix the lives around him—while figuring out his own.

*“Tracking Ben’ transformation from rebellious city boy to hardworking cowboy, Harmon digs beneath the stereotypes. . . . Skillful, often witty insights into human nature.”—Publishers Weekly, Starred

More Spotlights at my website: http://www.elisarolle.com/, My Lists/Gay Novels

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Tags: author: michael harmon, in the spotlight

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