Sometimes you look at a book cover and know you need to read that book. That's what happened with The Program by Suzanne Young. No, I didn't just buy the book without reading the plot summary, but I could have and been happy with my purchase.
Sloane and James are teenagers in a world where suicide has been ruled an epidemic among adolescents. Luckily, there is a cure: The Program. What's not so lucky is that the program basically erases every memory that is not overly happy - including the deaths of loved ones and boyfriends.
Sloane loves James and James loves Sloane. They'd do anything to remember each other.
What I enjoyed in this novel was that the romance was not some glorified relationship that ends with roses and a promise to stay together forever. Sure, the love story is there, and it's a huge part of the plot, but Young does a very good job and portraying the hard parts of relationships. I think it's important for young adults to realize not every moment of every relationship will be wonderful. There will be hard parts.
I also liked the pace of the novel. I never felt like a section lagged or like there was too much description. Because of this fast pace, I read the book in about two days. The end of the book was enough to make me go out the very next day and buy the second installment. My only gripe in an otherwise pleasant reading experience would be I wish there was a little less naive parenting taking place.
I would recommend this novel to anyone who wonders if it would be better to forget the past and start over. It's a fast summer read that makes you think about how our past shapes the person we are today.
Rating - 4.5/5