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The Program (The Program #1)

4.08  ·  Rating Details  ·  26,779 Ratings  ·  3,750 Reviews
In Sloane’s world, true feelings are forbidden, teen suicide is an epidemic, and the only solution is The Program.

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 ke
Hardcover, 405 pages
Published April 30th 2013 by Simon Pulse
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Bailee I've been in contact with Suzanne Young over Twitter with the possibility of filming it as a mini-series for Vimeo/Youtube with my new production…moreI've been in contact with Suzanne Young over Twitter with the possibility of filming it as a mini-series for Vimeo/Youtube with my new production company. We are so excited! (less)
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Community Reviews

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After having some time to think, i made the overall conclusion that this book is the most frustrating and saddest book i have ever read.

the program feature

The Program is set in a world where depression and suicide are considered a virus. If you are thought to have caught the virus, the handlers come to get you and take you to a facility known as The Program.

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Little teaser..
I look back at James one last time, and he gives me his signature smile, wide and cocky. But it's not real. Sometimes i think it's never rea
Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
I can see why some readers of young adult are swearing off dystopic stories now. I actually like dystopia, but I can see that they are beginning to suffer from the same story different day tropes. This for me is one of those.

First of all, you have suicide as an epidemic. WTF?
Supposedly, one in three or four kids are killing themselves. Why? I don't remember reading why in this book. It vaguely mentions that anti-depressants have been over prescribed and that "might" be the reason. Dude, I don't
Jun 20, 2015 Maureen rated it it was ok
Well I had a lot of issues with this book, but there were *some* good things so I don't think a 1 star was necessary. It was very nearly that though! IF YOU LOVE THIS BOOK YOU WILL PROBABLY NOT LOVE THIS REVIEW JUST PRIOR WARNING.
Before we go further in this review, let me just say this book (and review) will have some trigger warnings for suicide, self harm, & depression.
Let's start with the positives. The plot of the book was really interesting and the writing was alright. I definitely sp
Jul 16, 2014 Kate rated it did not like it
Edit, July 2014: Wow, so much passion about this review over a year later! While you can certainly feel free to leave comments on this review, I don't see my opinion of the book changing. The fact that the book is fiction does not change my opinion that it's irresponsible and unrealistic (particularly in a science fiction novel, which is supposed to be based on scientific fact) to portray mental illness in the way it is shown in The Program.

Books don't usually piss me off, but then I don't usual
If I wasn't so bored with dystopians lately, this one might have been more enjoyable for me. Although it has a little contemporary feel to it more than most, and the plot direction it takes is different from the expected and clichés "run and hide from the big bad government", in the end I still felt that it was yet another dystopian novel that doesn't particularly stand out from the rest.

A little reminiscent of Delirium, The Program involves teen suicide and how its become an epidemic, and the c
Jan 03, 2014 Mitch rated it liked it
Reactions to The Program will differ I think based on which of these two scenarios you were expecting:

A) a thought provoking treatment of teen suicide
B) a typical dystopian that co-opts yet another attention grabbing premise only to degenerate into the same evil government conspiracy keeping apart the star crossed lovers plot

If you thought B), The Program is a perfectly fine book. Ignore this review and enjoy the book for what it is. Personally though, I thought A), so my reaction went from
Oct 02, 2015 Salvatore rated it really liked it
4 madly stars

Imagine a world where teenagers are in danger of themselves. A world where teenagers kill themselves and suicides are contagious.

"If all your friends jumped off a bridge, would you, too?"
Apparently, the answer is yes.

To prevent this situation, the school district made the Program. Handlers will take anyone with suicidal tendencies. They will lock them in their institution and there they will take away their memories. When they get out they will be sent in a private school design
Dec 05, 2015 Angela rated it it was amazing

I put off reading The Program for so long. I had really no idea what it was about and I haven't truly known anyone whose read it. It's been in my TBR pile for about four months if not more. So I finally picked it up. I wish someone would have recommended this to me so I would have done it sooner. The Program was a a huge surprise.

With suicide rates at and all time high, and it being considered a disease you have to be careful of what you say or do at all
Apr 30, 2013 Blythe rated it really liked it
Christine The Dark Romance Junkie *Wallflower Addict*
4.5 Mental Stars

Imagine a world where suicide is an epidemic. Where showing signs of depression could get you sent away, and you'd come back as only a shell of your former self. Where shedding even one tear could wipe away your entire past...

I've always had a fascination with mental illness and how it works. Sloane, lives in a world where anti-depressants have been banned, after her brother committed suicide she couldn't even mourn because that would've have gotten her flagged and sent away to T
Sep 21, 2014 Jamie rated it really liked it
Suicide rates are higher than ever in the time period for this book. Seems mostly similar to current time but medical technology is higher and civilization control it tighter. Why? because 1 in 3 teens are offing themselves.

Right from the beginning the program annoys me in how high risks are decided. I see why people are concerned... But they are asked these daily questions such as "Are you overwhelmed or lonely?" Who isn't, once in a while at least, 1 of those things. Ugh...they need a better s

“Don’t say that,” he snaps. “Don’t even think of it.” He lets go of my hand. “I’ll kill myself before they ever take me into The Program.”

This was an okay story, and I liked parts of it (mostly the romance), but the pace was very slow, and it dragged a bit.

I felt quite sorry for both Sloane and James in this story. Both of them had lost Sloane’s brother who was a best friend to both of them, and to lose other friends too, it really wasn’t a nice situation for them to be in, and their depressio
5 stars

Usually when I love a book as much as I did with this one, I normally can't wait to write a review, things will pop in my head and I even just start writing things down in my notes if I'm busy. With this I couldn't do either of those things just because of the fact it is so hard to review. I actually feel like this could be the trickiest book to explain, this is because it's one of the most angsty, twisty, mind fuckery, heart-breaking, depressing and so out of the ordinary books I have ev
Okay, I’ve put this off long enough, so I’m just going to power through this… See, I’ve struggled for over a couple of weeks putting into words what The Program is truly about. My hesitation lies with the possibility that when I say, …This book is about suicide, but it’s really not about suicide... someone will take that one statement and not only get irritated with my lacking analogy but also not give The Program a chance.

So allow me a few moments while I try to convince you not to make the s
Emerson Forest-angelos
Jun 09, 2015 Emerson Forest-angelos rated it did not like it
Probably the worst book I have ever read. Concept is absolutely awful, makes a joke of eating disorders and depression like everyone can magically get infected for no reason. Suzanne Young's writing is reminiscent of Stephanie Meyer's because it is really just downright awful. Main characters have sex right off the bat in the beginning, and it's pathetic, strange, and sporadic. The opening of the book feels more like an erotica, then the middle turns into this unrealistic stupid crap about the P ...more
Dec 10, 2013 Renata rated it it was ok
This book was an entertaining read, I will give it that. Unfortunately, I had some major problems with it. For one thing, you didn't get any good descriptions of anything really besides James. It is true it leaves the reader to his or her imagination, but a better writer would give you some of both.

Secondly, Sloane was very dependent on boys. She depended on James to get her through Brady's death, she depended on Realm to get her through the program, and she even depended on Roger to help her r
Jun 17, 2015 Erika rated it it was amazing

The Program mi ha completamente stregata. Con una trama originalissima, uno stile di scrittura accattivante e dei personaggi coi fiocchi non può fare altro che annoverarsi tra i miei libri preferiti e lasciarmi trepidante in attesa del secondo.

In un mondo dove il suicidio è una malattia, vivono due giovani innamorati: Sloane e James. Non possono piangere o mostrare dolore e non devono assolutamente, in alcun modo, dare segni di debolezza o
Nov 13, 2015 Caitlyn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, ya-reads

This book took me weeks to finish. Weeks. That, coming from me, is insane. But it's because of how amazing this book was. The writing, which is predominantly about depression, literally weighs on your shoulders. It is by no means a light read. It's something that really resounds in you, from the descriptions of Sloane's feelings to the romance that Suzanne Young has managed to make fly off these pages.

The plot was original. In a world like ours, fraught with depression and anxiety everywhe
Feb 08, 2014 Brianna rated it really liked it
That ending... This book was simply amazing.

The only thing that I didn't like about this book was the romance, and the repetition that occurred in the first 120 pages. After finishing the book, I understood why Suzanne Young wrote those scenes, and I loved that she did.

The idea for The Program was actually quite brilliant, but also a bit frightening. This book is not a dystopia, it's more or less the exact same government that we have today. It's scary that something as horrible as suicide could
Trish at Between My Lines
May 27, 2013 Trish at Between My Lines rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviews-done
The Program is a book with oodles of plot holes but I was still sucked in. It kept me on the edge of my seat, reading nervously, always waiting for the axe to fall. I couldn't put it down so even though it’s far from flawless, I have to give it 4 stars.

Sloane’s brother has committed suicide and Sloane’s parents will do anything to stop her falling victim to the teen suicide epidemic that is sweeping the world. Even if that means sending her to The Program where teens are sent for a treatment cou
May 20, 2011 Hannah marked it as to-read
Suzanne Young, Simon Pulse, and brainwashing. These are a few of my favorite things.
Mar 22, 2015 Dystopia28 marked it as to-read
This book sounds so good
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jan 06, 2015 Michael rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-2014

Well that was different. The function of the program was confusing but I'm glad it was so different than the usual dystopian. It went further. I'm not really sure how this will all wrap up but in definitely down for finding out how.
May 14, 2014 Benjaminoftomes rated it it was amazing
amazing amazing AMAZING!
Apr 20, 2013 Ashley rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc, e-arc
The Program by Suzanne Young - What did they erase this time? It wasn't theirs to take.

Nose Graze — Young Adult book reviews

4.5 stars

Wowie, The Program book was awesome! Even though the synopsis hints at a love story, I didn't expect it to dominate the book the way it did. I think I expected more of a sci-fi than a romance, but I was pleasantly surprised to find out otherwise! This love story completely rocks. Imagine soul mates, destiny, "meant to be", love that knows no bounds.. but all without being cheesy.

The Program is completely effortless. I feel like it deals with so
Taschima Cullen
Mar 24, 2013 Taschima Cullen rated it it was amazing

"I stand there, clutching my arm and feeling helpless. I'm so violated, so angry, that I think I might completely lose it right now."


The Program left me in a puddle of my own feels. I read the book for hours without being able to put it down. At first it's a little slow, true, but it starts to pick up real quick once the bodies start dropping. The Program is so heartbreaking, so honest, that every word just cuts into your soul. I was not expecting what I got, but I am glad I took the leap. The c
Bee {Quite the Novel Idea}
This review is also posted on my blog: Istyria book blog

Wow... This book is heartbreaking, frustrating, dramatic, romantic and more. It was more then I expected, to be honest. Way more. And I loved every part of it.

"You're here for me. I wouldn't have survived without you, and I couldn't now. We're in this together , James. Don't forget that."

So in this book suicide is an epidemic. And the only 'cure' they could come up with is The Program. (Stupid donkeys... I may have a few ideas that could
Lana Del Slay
May 12, 2013 Lana Del Slay marked it as never-reading-ever
The premise, as the reviews describe it, is flawed.

Depression is not a matter of teenage angst gone horribly wrong. I should know. I was there. Removing my memories wouldn't have changed anything about the course of my illness because it was the product of a chemical imbalance, one I have inherited from my father.

(Do you know how I can tell? He's on the same drugs.)

Would it have made my illness easier to bear? It might have done. After all, mine was aggravated by an intense homesickness and the
Jun 06, 2015 Karleigh.Reads rated it liked it
Shelves: on-bookshelf
So heartbreaking. Full review to come
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Suzanne Young is the New York Times bestselling author of The Program, The Treatment, and several other novels. She currently lives in Tempe, Arizona where she teaches high school English and obsesses about books. Learn more about Suzanne at
More about Suzanne Young...

Other Books in the Series

The Program (3 books)
  • The Treatment (The Program, #2)
  • The Adjustment (The Program, #3)

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“...some things are better left in the past. And true things are destined to repeat themselves.” 152 likes
“If it's meant to be, you'll find each other again.” 97 likes
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