Author: Suzanne Young
Series: The Program #1
Rating: 4 / 5 stars
The Program reminds me in many ways of Scott Westerfeld's Uglies trilogy, one of my favorite series of all times. Sloane mirror Tally, who watches all her friends change as they are treated by the Program, something set up to help prevent the climbing suicidal rate among teens in their society.
After the death of her brother, Sloane clings to her relationship with James, her boyfriend and brother's best friend. But when the Program comes for James as well, Sloane struggles to deal and ultimately finds herself in danger of being put through the program herself. While in the Uglies trilogy, everyone is required to go through this transformation rite of passage for society, in The Program it is only those who are deemed a danger to themselves by the higher ups.
The Program could have been a heart wrenching, thought provoking novel that makes you ponder how you would cope with your whole life disappearing, memory by memory. Instead, Young's introduction to the series follows the typical YA pattern of focusing instead on the romantic aspects of the story, while Sloane worries about losing her memories solely in how they relate to her losing James.
Even though The Program is a little too romantically driven for my liking, especially when the obligatory love triangle is tossed in for good measure as well, it is still a fun, quick read that I devoured quickly so I could start my way into The Treatment. It could have been better, true, and it certainly could have been deeper and more thought provoking, but it definitely could have been way worse too. Overall, it is a good introduction to Young as I have never read a novel by her before.