The Pipeliner by Shawn Hartje @pipelinernovel



For seventeen-year-old Jason Krabb, high school life in 1990s Idaho is a world of cargo shorts, cassette tapes, and junk food. Plagued equally by algebra and puberty, Jason sets out to find a girlfriend and become a rock guitarist. His quest is irreversibly jolted when he attends a bonfire and meets an alluring girl from the other side of town and a rag tag crew who are bringing gas lines through the desert in order to keep the lights on in Portland and Seattle, places where Jason hopes to find his nirvana as a guitarist.

Meanwhile, things deteriorate at home. Jason’s pediatrician mom, Leah, sadly faces the twilight of her parenting years while his father, Curtis, contends with the enormity of running a big ticket research laboratory and coming to terms with his son’s wayward path.

Pipeliner is at once a coming of age love story and a comical timestamp of early 90s family life. Set in the fictional Idaho town of Helen Springs, pop. 58,000, its characters are as vibrant as the lofty peaks and purple sunsets of the high desert. Here we find rich farmers, poor ranchers, dutiful Mormons, government honchos, disgruntled vets, drug-dealing bruisers, irksome teachers, and spirited students, all doing their best to keep the lights on.

GENRE: Coming of Age, think Holden Caulfield meets Dazed and Confused.

BOOK LENGTH: 248 pages


LEVEL OF SEXUAL CONTENT: Hearty, descriptive and numerous sexual scenes

Publication Date: Published on Amazon and via Smashwords 11-30-2016. Also on Goodreads


This story is set in Helen Springs, a fictional town in Idaho USA.

This is a super journey back into the 90’s to remember the era as a teenager or as a parent, either way you will do it with cringes and giggles as you recognise so many familiar scenes and scenarios.

Jason is really a young man on the brink of coming of age. The time when decisions have to be made whether to stay on at school, to follow in the foot steps of his successful older brother, knowing he hasn’t a cat in hell’s chance of being above average himself or on the other hand he could just do his own thing. Well this is the Summer to find out.

At 17 the world is at his feet and he knows all the answers, I mean what 17-year-old kid doesn’t? so leaving home to go and join a work team of men laying gas pipes, so he can earn enough money to move on and join a Rock Band as a Rock Guitarist sounds a pretty cool plan! Now with best laid plans and all that, they aren’t worth pursuing if it is easy.

Of course in any story there is always a girl, Betsy, and the first clumsy fumbles and mishaps, which are not only very descriptive but also funny. Well they say practice makes perfect and the way they go at it they should be pretty darn good now! Think parties, think music and think experiments with a few substances too. It all gets real crazy and nostalgic.

The story is full of vibrant characters that radiate pure energy and passion on every page. Jason wants desperately to leave childhood behind and be an adult, to have choices, even if that means making the wrong one at times. It is really a timeless story, which could be set in any year,  with the same choices just to different music. Shawn Hartje’s tell it as it is book is one for adults to read and look back on as their own memories as it is a definite adult only read because of the content. A real clever book.

I wish to thank the author for an e copy of this book which I have honestly reviewed.


Shawn Hartje

Shawn Hartje was raised in Sioux City, Iowa and has lived in Idaho, Colorado and West Virginia. He has lived in Northern California since 2002. He enjoys high desert scenery, paddling rivers, and skateboarding with his kids.





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