“Until It Hurts to Stop” is a decent enough story by Jennifer Hubbard. I liked the slice of life style of the narrative and the honesty of the protagonist, but what I think makes or breaks this novel is whether or not you can see how the main character grows within her experiences. Maggie is a young woman who has more than enough issues on her plate, between dealing with a former bully who returns from Italy to her school, between dealing with liking her best male friend and the distance between them as he grows interested in another girl, and dealing with a best female friend who seems more distant than ever.
I did find that Maggie was often self-centered, jealous, and often acted in ways that I didn’t agree with, but I did get a sense of where her mind was throughout all the issues she has to deal with and the scope of her relationships. The writing style/prose reads well, and I think Hubbard’s narrative works well for conveying Maggie’s voice. I still felt like there was a lot in this story that could’ve amounted to more, and that it could’ve felt more fulfilling than the point where the book ended. It just felt incomplete in a way that I can’t entirely put my finger on for the respective comflicts. Some resolutions came up, like Maggie’s relationship with Vanessa and both of their sentiments towards Nick and Maggie realizing that Raleigh no longer bullied her and that she had to find some way to move on with her life. But for me, it just didn’t completely feel like a full experience for me to read. Thus, this wasn’t the best narrative I’ve read for its subject matters, but it wasn’t one of the worst either – just middle of the road that could’ve offered more.
Overall score: 2.5/5 stars