Book Review #49: The Program by Suzanne Young

I rate this book 4 out of 5 stars.

(Finished Reading: 11/02/14
My 8th book this year.)

Suicide is a massive epidemic affecting too many teenagers. After losing too many lives, society has decided to impose “The Program” to control this mass problem. Handlers watch the students on a regular basis, searching for signs of depression or suicidal individuals.

Every teen has a fear of being taken into the Program and losing all of their memories, their pasts’. After being flagged as a potential risk, handlers take people whether willingly or forcefully.

Sloane’s brother, Brady, committed suicide. That means people are already keeping tabs on her. Those who were close to someone who committed suicide are high risk. One handler has his eye on Sloane, waiting for her to breakdown and take her in.

James was Brady’s best friend. He made a promise to look after Sloane after watching Brady die. Now we see if Sloane and James beat the Program or get taken in…

What happens when you lose all of the things that ever made you feel pain? When they take away meaningful memories but leave you only with happy thoughts?

I loved this book. I love the idea of having everything painful removed. Having only happy memories must be such a relief. But surely confusion is a permanent feeling?

I fell for James. For his quirkiness. His bad boy reputation and his need to protect Sloane. I’m intrigued by the ending and am very much looking forward to reading book 2 of the series “The Treatment”.

It feels like the whole book is centred around defying rules and beating the program but it works. I highly recommend this book. A fresh idea and a delightful find. Congratulations Suzanne Young for this amazing story and for broadening my mind.

Written by Ling Lee (11/02/14).

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