The Program (novel)

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The Program
The Program novel.jpg
First edition cover
Author Gregg Hurwitz
Country USA
Language English
Series Tim Rackley Novels
Genre Novel
Publisher William Morrow
Publication date
August 31, 2004
Media type Print (Hardback & Paperback) & AudioBook
Pages 368 pp
ISBN 0-06-053040-5
Preceded by The Kill Clause
Followed by Troubleshooter

The Program: A Novel is a novel by Gregg Hurwitz, first published in 2004. It has since been released as an Audio CD, an Audio Cassette, and was reprinted in paperback format, in 2005.[1][2][3] Hurwitz's prior book, The Kill Clause, will soon be made into a motion-picture.[4] The Program picks up where The Kill Clause left off, following a series of books by the author involving fictional Deputy U.S. Marshal, Tim Rackley.[5][6][7]


The work is part of a series following the character Tim Rackley, a member of the United States Marshals Service, and opens with a suicide in the La Brea Tar Pits. Rackley must rescue the daughter of a Hollywood producer from a dangerous mind control cult, by infiltrating the group.[8][9] Charismatic leader TD Betters had created his own society based on self-help tenets, and Rackley must navigate through it without getting pulled in himself.[10]

The novel describes a fictional large group awareness training called "The Program",[8] and characters also use the term Large Group Awareness Training and "LGAT" to refer to the course.[11] In the novel, the seminar leader had "married two cult models", which one of the protagonists describes as a blend of the "psychotherapeutic cult", and the "self-improvement cult".[11] The character then tells his friend that "The Program", is similar to a combination of the Sullivanians and Lifespring.[11] Werner Erhard is quoted, prior to the opening of the prologue.[11]


Back cover, The Program, 2004 ed.

Publishers Weekly characterized the work as engaging, and grounded in character and detail.[10] Lukowsky of Booklist described the work as a "gripping read."[12] The Oakland Press described the work as a thriller and a good character study.[13] Oakland Press writer Mark Terry went on to state that the author had done his homework researching for the book, and that it was a fascinating and disturbing look at cults.[13] The Chicago Sun-Times also gave a favorable review, noting that this was the author's fifth work at the age of 31.[8] The book also received favorable reviews in The Capital Times,[14] Cleveland Plain Dealer,[4] and the San Jose Mercury News.[15]

In the Audio version, AudioFile cited narrator Dylan Baker's "strong performance", stating that he differentiated between the multitude of characters in the book well, making them easy to distinguish.[16] AudioFile went on to state that Baker's narration helped the listener comprehend how cults could manipulate those ignorant of their tactics.[16]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Hurwitz, The Program, Audio CD, Baker Dylan (Narrator), HarperAudio, August 31, 2004., ISBN 0-06-075776-0 , ISBN 978-0-06-075776-2
  2. ^ Hurwitz, The Program, Audio Cassette, Erik Steele (Narrator), BBC Audiobooks America, November 2005, ISBN 0-7927-3845-4 , ISBN 978-0-7927-3845-9 .
  3. ^ Hurwitz, The Program, HarperTorch, August 30, 2005, ISBN 0-06-053041-3 , ISBN 978-0-06-053041-9
  4. ^ a b Gail, Nancy (January 16, 2005). "Interview with Gregg Hurwitz". Cleveland Plain Dealer. 2007 Retrieved 2007-10-28. 
  5. ^ Lukowsky, Wes (June 1, 2004). "Hurwitz, Gregg. The Program". Booklist. American Library Association. 100 (19–20): Page 1708. 
  6. ^ Staff (July 15, 2004). "Hurwitz, Gregg: The Program". Kirkus Reviews. VNU Business Media. 72 (14): Page 649. 
  7. ^ Staff (July 12, 2004). "The Program". Publishers Weekly. Reed Business Information. 251 (28): Page 44. 
  8. ^ a b c Montgomery, David (September 12, 2004). "Up against a monomaniacal 'Teacher'". Chicago Sun-Times. Sun-Times News Group. p. 12. 
  9. ^ Adams, Jane (2004). "Editorial Review, The Program". Retrieved 2007-10-28. 
  10. ^ a b Publishers Weekly (2004)
  11. ^ a b c d Hurwitz, Gregg Andrew (2004). The Program. William Morrow. p. 368. ISBN 0-06-053040-5. 
  12. ^ Lukowsky, Booklist (2004)
  13. ^ a b Terry, Mark (November 7, 2004). "Cult 'Program' rich with detail, thrills". The Oakland Press. 2007 The Oakland Press. 
  14. ^ Thomas, Rob (September 10, 2004). "Program's' Cult Tale Pulls You In". The Capital Times. Capital Newspapers. 
  15. ^ Weimers, Leigh (September 29, 2004). "Mighty Voices Could Make a Mighty Read". San Jose Mercury News. pp. 2B. 
  16. ^ a b Staff (2005). "Review, The Program (Audio version)". AudioFile. AudioFile 2005, Portland, Maine. 

External links[edit]