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3.57  ·  Rating details ·  437 ratings  ·  76 reviews
YOUNG JAMES FROST just knows, deep in his bones, that he's a writer. He writes far into early mornings, after his wearying hours of scrubbing toilets and sweeping floors. He loves writing that much. But it's not only the joy of words that keeps him grinding; it's his desire to retire the janitor's mop. He sees being published as the key to living an improved life. James ha ...more
Paperback, 332 pages
Published July 1st 2009 by MindStir Media
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3.57  · 
Rating details
 ·  437 ratings  ·  76 reviews

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Dec 19, 2017 rated it really liked it
Unconventional by J.J. Hebert is just that, unconventional. This is a highly inspiring book with a great message. James is an aspiring writer, who has had a rough go at life. He's a janitor, and wants nothing more than to be a published author. He has a dream though, and actively pursues it. Great character development makes the reader totally root for James, the underdog. You want him to succeed so badly. An amazing plot that pulls on the heartstrings and fills the reader with joy, consternatio ...more
Feb 24, 2010 rated it it was amazing
A Wonderful, inspiring, uplifting story of James and Leigh as they try to reach for the "Unconventional" amid family dysfunction,and those who would have them be just ordinary. This was a departure from my usual choice of old historical novels. I was very much surprised by its impact even on my own life. Every one should read the novel and especially those younger folks attempting to make decisions about what they wish to do with their lives. Great Justin, I look forward to your next novel.
Oct 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Unconventional is a heartwarmining story of a young mans dream of becoming a published writer. Has love, humor, heatbreak and inspiration. Wondeful read for a first time author. Recommed highly for a great read.
Kitty Honeycutt
Apr 22, 2011 rated it it was amazing

This novel spoke to me, being an aspiring author myself there is so much to learn contained in this one book. It says a lot about positive thinking and that you have to believe in yourself before anyone else will believe in you. It also speaks about the power of faith and how it can change your life for the better. James Frost is a struggling artist, a wonderful writer that is repeatedly rejected by publishing companies and editors that think his story is just not
Sep 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
It's rare to find a book in which the characters can relate so much to every day life. It's even more rare to find those characters in which you can think of them like friends while you read. The characters suffer with every day, real problems, which makes them very tangible.

As the character James Frost often says in the book, being a janitor is a job, it is not who he is. How often we forget how we are defined (and in turn, how we define people) in our lives. Author JJ Hebert did a remarkable
Paula Wiseman
Jan 02, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Everyone loves an underdog and aspiring author James Frost is one in every aspect. However, he has a good heart, a gift and a dream. I loved the parallel drawn as James begins to understand God's sovereignty over us much like he works with the characters in his novel. In an imaginary dialogue with his characters, James says,"I was there with you from the beginning, loving you. I saw the end before you were born."

Deeper than the idea of triumph over adversity, though, is the theme of the essentia
J. A.  Lewis
Feb 23, 2016 rated it did not like it
I struggled through this one. James Frost, a young adult male, hates his life, his clothes, and many of the people around him. I skimmed through much of this. I couldn't figure out who the target audience was for this book: Christians? Young adults? On the Kindle edition, during one section when James attends his girlfriend's church, the print changed to a large (14 Font?) for just that section. James is angry at everyone... his friend that decides to attend college; his father for ignoring him ...more
Jul 01, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Some books are life changers, some are life affirmers, some are life encouragers. I'd put this one in the last category. Although it didn't change my life, it encouraged me through the realness of the story. J.J. doesn't paint the path to getting published (or to conversion for that matter) in all lively hues. There are dark times for him, and darkness in his soul and in others. He is careful to show the reader that although changing one's life is possible, it doesn't always occur in the way or ...more
Jun 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I got this a free book from amazon and I really Loved this Book, James Frost is a strugglin author trying to get his Book published. He has to work as a janitor to make a living and he hated his job. With no formal education its hard and people look at him like hes dirt. He Meets a Lovely girl who believes in him and with her Love and understanding his dreams do come true!! Its heartwarming, and full of Christian Value!! With Gods Love all things are Possible for those who Believe!!
Valerie Waters
Mar 23, 2012 rated it it was amazing
What a great book! I loved the main character James, he is an amazing person! Such a good book about hope and never giving up your dreams! And being kind to others no matter what. and not judging people by their occupation, and about accepting people for who they are. I really loved this book!
May 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Everyone needs a bit of inspiration from time to time and Unconventional is the perfect story to fall into for not only great entertainments, but for a blessing and reminder to believe in oneself.

Honestly, I have been wanting to read Unconventional for some time. When I learned that J.J. Hebert would be touring with Pump Up Your Book Promotions, I instantly jumped at the opportunity to be part of the tour. I was thoroughly rewarded for my patience. Unconventional is a story of a young man, Jame
Mar 24, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2011-favorites
I can’t remember the last time I found myself at a loss for words like this after reading a book. I finished Unconventional a couple days ago and I am still thinking about it and wishing it wasn’t over. If you read my reviews a lot, I am sure you are tired of hearing me say that I prefer debut novels over anything else. I have always felt that debut novels are truly the author’s baby and that so much of his or her soul has gone into the book. I could definitely tell that J.J. Hebert poured his h ...more
Paula Vince
Jun 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
James Frost is a young man who works as a janitor in his father's business, but really wants to be a published fiction author. James has done what many wannabes have never achieved and produced a quality 100 000 word manuscript. He thinks the hard part is over but has a lot to learn about the nature of the journey to getting published.

He is a hero I can appreciate. James has a chip on his shoulder the size of a log and isn't afraid to have a good cry - two qualities that don't usually characteri
Aug 30, 2009 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
May 09, 2011 rated it it was amazing
In spite of working in a soul-numbing job, James Frost clings to his dream of becoming a published novelist and stays determined to write a masterpiece. James' friend, Mitch, challenges him to be unconventional in his writing and his life. James' girlfriend, Leigh, challenges him to open his mind to God. And James' editor, Arthur, challenges him to write a better book. With all the challenges before him and the self-doubt inside of him, James sometimes fights just to get through the day. However ...more
Jan 16, 2012 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book could be re-named "How to Properly Feed and Care for the Writer in Your Life" and I would highly recommend it to anyone who knows a published or unpublished author. As the wife of an author myself, I found myself nodding my head in agreement for at least the first half of the book. The frustrations, roadblocks, callous comments and side-tracks are completely on par for the life of a writer. Sometimes I wish I could just explain to folks how hard it is to be a writer, because in actuali ...more
C.E. Hart
Apr 30, 2011 rated it really liked it
Unconventional, by J.J. Hebert

This is … well … an unconventional story.

James Frost, a writer with low self-esteem and self-worth, struggles to live out his dream of becoming a successful novelist. He writes (and rewrites) whenever he finds time between eating, sleeping, and working as a janitor in his father's cleaning business. He hates his job and how people judge him for being 'only a janitor'--it makes him feel invisible. Although his writing fills his heart, his head is full of self loathin
Apr 22, 2011 rated it really liked it
Unconventional by J.J. Hebert is about a young man with a big dream who is stuck in a dead end job. James Frost wants to be a writer, it's all he wants to do, but his manuscript is rejected by publisher after publisher. To make ends meet, he works as a janitor in his father's cleaning business.

James doesn't have many friends, and most of them have gone off to college. He's not very close to his father who is too busy looking for a girlfriend. James has very low self-esteem and is ready to give
Jun 26, 2010 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle
With Sam's parents driving, he and James head out from their home state of New Hampshire to Pennsylvania where Sam will be attending college. James doesn't go to college so meeting new people can be tough when having to explain what he does for work. He works for his father in his janitorial business and is in the process of writing a book which he's trying to get published. He doesn't believe he should have to fit into the conventional mold of doing what everyone else is doing just because ever ...more
Oct 14, 2012 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kindle-books, 2012
`Unconventional' by J.J. Herbert was a confusing read for me. Parts of the storylines were gripping and Kindle page turning but others were boring and there were too many story lines for me.

James Frost, the main character is a janitor for a school. He could have gone to college but he passed that up saying that he wanted to be "unconventional". He wanted to be a great writer. His parents divorced and his sister went with her mother to live. He chose to live with his father. But his father is ver
Karen Baney
Mar 17, 2011 rated it liked it
This interesting story about a janitor who dreams of becoming an author is pretty good. I debated long over whether it was four-star worthy or not. The biggest reason I decided on three-stars was because about half way through the book, I started to get a bit bored. Part of this is because I prefer a romance and was disappointed that the romance took a distant back seat in the middle of the book. I also felt there was too much preaching at the reader during James' conversion.

The characters were
Jan Marie Newby
Jun 12, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Unconventional, a debut novel by J.J. Hebert, is the story of a young man with a calling, a calling that cannot be ignored or denied. It tells the story of James Frost and his journey to achieve his dream while overcoming seemingly insurmountable obstacles. It is the saga of a young man's growth in faith, both in himself and in God; of persistance in striving for something that remains tantalizingly out of reach; of faith when it seems there is no reason to continue. I read this book in one sitt ...more
Suneel Dhand
Jul 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This was an excellent read, and very inspirational. I enjoyed it on a multitude of levels—because it dealt with so many different themes through the story of James Frost:

1. The simple triumph of hopes and dreams against adversity

2. Staying true to oneself and maintaining personal integrity through difficult times

3. Having faith in a better tomorrow, and adopting a positive attitude versus slipping into negativity and despair

3. An unfortunate family situation, and the sorrow of having unsupportiv
Mar 26, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: the-book-dump
I quit this book because I am so sick and tired of Christian novels that feature a godly Christian girl getting into a romantic relationship with a non-Christian guy. If you want to put that type of storyline in, Christian authors, could you please show it in its true light? In my opinion, missionary dating is extremely problematic and dangerous, and especially so when you introduce physical affection into the equation.

I also was starting to feel that the writing in this book was not greatest in
Jul 05, 2012 rated it it was ok
This book has a good plot and builds the character's personalities really well. It just seemed to be sort of dragged out to me. In my my the interesting parts didn't really start until I was halfway through reading it and the spaces between those parts were a little to long for me. I liked the overall message and it also had a good ending ther's were just some parts that were a little dull to read.
Aug 24, 2009 rated it it was amazing
I enjoyed Unconventional from the cover art to the final page. Sometimes a story or a character will compel the reader to examine life from a fresh perspective, and Unconventional does just that. The clever parallels drawn between Robert Frost and the main character, James Frost, convey a foundation of inspiration that lovers of the poet will really appreciate. An entertaining and very touching read, I recommend it to anyone who loves a great story.
Oct 11, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: audiobooks
This is a decent read. It is corny is some places, especially in how quickly a cynic drops right into and is completely comfortable with religion. But overall, it is a good and touching story that is worth the time.
Danielle Benji
Jun 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I really enjoy it. I like the way that the novel is written makes me feel like am there. I can really relate to this story line because I chose a different route then the norm as far going to college. Good Job so far J.J. Herbert!
Oct 20, 2010 rated it really liked it
Pretty good, especially for his first book. About a kid who decides not to be conventional. He doesn't go to college, but works as a janitor while he finishes writing his first book and tries to get it published. Didn't want to put it down once I started reading.
Jul 10, 2009 rated it really liked it
Still waiting for the next chapter of this on I've caught up with the author... but am enjoying this "clean" book on a man fulfilling his dreams.
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J. J. Hebert is the author of the bestselling books UNCONVENTIONAL (2009), WEEPY THE DRAGON (2012), and THE BACKWARDS K (2017). UNCONVENTIONAL has spent time on the Top 100 Best Seller list and has also occupied Amazon's #1 spot on the Inspirational Spiritual Fiction and Christian Fiction Best Seller lists. UNCONVENTIONAL has attracted over 100,000 sales/downloads, making it one of the ...more
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