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The Program

(The Program #1)

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  47,386 ratings  ·  5,860 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 28th 2013 by Simon Pulse
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Average rating 4.06  · 
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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 nev
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
A funny thing about this book is that I only ever read it when on a train. For some reason, it became my travelling read.
The first part of the book was totally mindblowing. It left me speechless so many times. I loved how we were thrown straight into the story. All the time I felt like this would give me a heart attack! This book was/is amazing! I love it and I love James!
Except for the epilogue... I hate this type of epilogues: two weeks later, ten years later etc. That was slightly disappoin
Jun 19, 2015 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 sped t
Jun 14, 2013 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
Jan 30, 2012 rated it liked it
Shelves: arc, own
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
Feb 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is one of my new favorite books.
And I mean it's a top favorite.

I can't even explain how much I love this book. And I think a lot of my love for it could come from the fact that it really hit home. I've never personally had depression, but when I was in high school there was someone in my life who was really, really important to me. And I was right there during every second of his battle. It was really devastating, and something I don't like to remember very often, but this book brought me
Apr 30, 2013 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
Sophie's Reading Corner
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 desi
Aj the Ravenous Reader

I’ll make this quick and painless like ‘DeathQuik’.^^ It’s a cheesy, gooey, melodramatic love story in the guise of a dystopian novel with a futuristic setting in which people are plagued with an epidemic that makes them want to go and kill themselves. Don’t bother with the whys because you won’t get any. Just go along with the story and the half absurdity of it all and I’m sure you’ll enjoy. Lol. If you don’t like that kind of stuff I’d say you skip it but if you gather much enjoyment and enter
Jul 14, 2014 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
Jan 31, 2017 rated it did not like it
What could have been potential for great commentary about society's treatment of mental health and suicide is squandered by badly written, melodramatic teenage drivel. ...more
Christine Wallflower & Dark Romance Junkie
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
Emerson Forest-angelos
Oct 24, 2013 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
Jan 20, 2013 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
Dec 03, 2013 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
Rachel Reads Ravenously
3.5 stars

“...some things are better left in the past. And true things are destined to repeat themselves.”

Since Goodreads published a list of the Top 100 YA books, I have been making a conscious effort to read (almost) all of them. The Program makes 74/100. You can find the list here:

The Program is a YA dystopia novel where teen suicide is a sweeping epidemic. In response to this, the US government has created a program which saves the life of a suicidal teen. The onl
Aug 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
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
Sarah Elizabeth

“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 depress
Danielle (The Blonde Likes Books)
The Program was one of my Beat the Backlist challenge books, since it’s been on my TBR list since 2014, and it really hit home for me, so it actually took me a while to finish the book even though I loved it.
The Program is set in the not-so-distant future in a world where suicide has become an epidemic. Those under the age of 18 are closely monitored for signs of “infection” (aka: depression) and if they are displaying the signs, they are taken to The Program, where their memories are erased and
C.G. Drews
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Ohhh my gosh, where do I even start? How do I even sum up the awesomeness that is this book? I expected to like it, but I absolutely ADORED it. It hit all these teary chords in my heart and I sniffled quite a bit. It's talent to writ a book about a depressing subject and have the reader come out mildly happy at the end. This book has aaaall the talent.

Do I shelve it as dystopian, though? It's set Somewhere In the Very Near Future, where teens are treated for depression by locking them up an
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
Rachel E. Carter
Mar 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
I would recommend this book to fans of All Our Yesterdays. I thought at first I wouldn't enjoy because the protagonist was already together with the guy... but then I saw where this book was going and it was brilliant. The romance was spot on. I fell in love with James just like Sloane. I just didn't love some of the plot elements in the Program itself (honestly I had a hard time with how convenient certain elements were (view spoiler) ...more
Ben Alderson
May 11, 2014 rated it it was amazing
amazing amazing AMAZING!
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Trish at Between My Lines
Apr 30, 2013 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 marked it as to-read
Suzanne Young, Simon Pulse, and brainwashing. These are a few of my favorite things.
Hailey (Hailey in Bookland)
Apr 30, 2014 rated it really liked it
This was an enjoyable read
It was infuriating but also really interesting
Id recommend
Larry H
May 26, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Holy crap, I loved this book. It's been a while since a story has so gripped me that I felt the need to finish it in one day, and then was disappointed once I was finished that it was over. But Suzanne Young's The Program is one of those novels.

Teen suicide has reached epidemic proportions, deemed a "behavioral contagion." To combat this enormous problem, the only proven course of treatment is The Program. Those who appear to be suffering from depression, or associated with those who are depress
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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

Other books in the series

The Program (6 books)
  • The Treatment (The Program, #2)
  • The Remedy (The Program, #3)
  • The Epidemic (The Program, #4)
  • The Adjustment (The Program, #5)
  • The Complication (The Program, #6)

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