Publish date: April 2013
Length: 408 pages
"Sloane knows better than to cry in front of anyone. With suicide now an international epidemic, one outburst could land her in The Program, the only proven course of treatment. Sloane’s parents have already lost one child; Sloane knows they’ll do anything to keep her alive. She also knows that everyone who’s been through The Program returns as a blank slate. Because their depression is gone—but so are their memories.
Under constant surveillance at home and at school, Sloane puts on a brave face and keeps her feelings buried as deep as she can. The only person Sloane can be herself with is James. He’s promised to keep them both safe and out of treatment, and Sloane knows their love is strong enough to withstand anything. But despite the promises they made to each other, it’s getting harder to hide the truth. They are both growing weaker. Depression is setting in. And The Program is coming for them." (Goodreads)
My student book club picked The Program as one of their summer books, along with The 5th Wave. I would have read it regardless, but maybe not as soon if not for book club. I thoroughly enjoyed it and am really looking forward to reading more from Suzanne Young.
I really love the premise behind this book and think it has huge appeal for teens. Being a teenager can be so hard and I think most go through rough periods, similar to some situations that characters go through in The Program. Teens (and adults) will definitely be able to relate to this and think about what they would do in Sloane's situation. This books raises tons of interesting questions and I can't wait to discuss them with students. The question that stuck with me the most after finishing was: if I could, would I want to erase bad/sad memories? Interesting to think about...
I honestly can't think of anything I didn't like about The Program. I thought the writing was great and it was hard to put the book down. I read it over two days, not wanting to stop. The pacing was good and I was really curious about the characters and who to trust. I am definitely looking forward to the sequel and reading more by Suzanne Young!