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Suffer the Children

3.88  ·  Rating details ·  2,309 ratings  ·  442 reviews
From an acclaimed horror writer, a chilling tale of blood-hungry children who rise from the dead in this innovative spin on apocalyptic vampire fiction.

Suffer the Children presents a terrifying tale of apocalyptic fiction, as readers are introduced to Herod's Syndrome, a devastating illness that suddenly and swiftly kills all young children across the globe. Soon, they ret
Paperback, 343 pages
Published May 20th 2014 by Gallery/Permuted Press
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this is an excellent piece of literary horror, and a clever spin on the traditional vampire story.

in this novel, we see the rise of an epidemic that comes to be known as "herod's syndrome" in which all children who have not yet reached puberty suddenly die. not after an illness, not with any warning signs, they just suddenly drop dead, all at once.

the immediate aftermath of this is grim - in the relatively small suburb of lansdowne, michigan, where this story takes place, they are suddenly fac
YO. I gotta tell ya'll, this is one fucked-up little book!

Let's start with this book's awesome premise. Out of nowhere, a worldwide event (later dubbed Herod's Syndrome) causes all pre-pubescent children to drop dead. Then, after three days, it resurrects them, but in order to stay resurrected, they need to ingest a certain amount of human blood. The novel follows three families as they navigate this new reality.

Craig DiLouie takes this crazy concept and really milks it for all it's worth, deli
Feb 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Brilliantly disturbing. A truly apocalyptic novel.
Sadie Hartmann Mother Horror
Hey-O! This was a fun book. I think the party started when I joined a buddy read with some girlfriends of mine on Instagram that love sick and horrible things as much as I do. What's wrong with us?
So if you want a plot summary, there's a good one right here on Goodreads and the back of this book. If you want my opinion on this book, it goes like this:
The pages flew by. The story is fast paced and instantly engaging. The narrator bounces around from 3-4 character narratives and their unique story
Ashley Daviau
Oct 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Right from the start my gut was telling me that I'd ADORE this book and my gut was 100% right! In fact, I loved it so much that I think it might actually be one of my top five reads of the year. It had everything I look for in a book and MUCH more!

I was instantly hooked right from the beginning and I just couldn't stop turning the pages. I was both horrified and fascinated by the whole idea behind the story. It's really quite terrifying if you think about it because it raises the question of ho
May 27, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
4 to 4.5 stars

First of all I have to proclaim my love for creepy kids in horror books & movies, nothing is scarier than a evil child. There are lots of hungry creepy kids in this one!

I thought this was an interesting take on vampirism. A disease, named Herod, strikes all children of the world killing them. Days later the children are miraculously resurrected but the children are hungry.....for blood. This book explores just how far parents will go for their children. As a mother I could easily
Andrea ❤Ninja Bunneh❤
If creepy kid from The Walking Dead,

creepy kid from 30 Days of Night,

and Gage from Pet Sematary by Stephen King all got together, you would have Suffer the Children.

Kids under the age of 12 are dropping like flies for no apparent reason. Parents are consumed with grief, mourning their children, in a state of worldwide shock and disbelief. Society struggles to maintain order as well as handle the devastation.

Suddenly after three days, the kids awaken. However, they aren't the same. In a state of decomposition th
Rachel (TheShadesofOrange)
3.0 Stars
The horror in the story more comes from the devastating loss of the children rather than their vampire resurrection. This was a very emotional story, addressing themes from grief to the lengths parents will go to save their children. As someone without children, I did not entirely connect with this story. I would recommend this one to parents since they will likely get more out of the story than I did.
Patrice Hoffman
May 05, 2014 rated it it was ok
Suffer the Children is the latest novel written by Craig DeLouie. What's instantly gripping about this novel and pretty much sparked my interest was the creepy cover. I mean look at it. The dirty, dilapidated, beheaded doll always suggests the novel will be pure horror. Long story short, this cover was a tad bit misleading.

It's a normal day like any other in this Michigan town when kids start dropping like flies. They just flat out die. Not just the children in this small town, but EVERY child u
Matt Rudy
Dec 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
How far would you go to feed your child? Would you give your own blood? Would you kill for them?

In this apocolptic book the parents have to really think about these questions.

All of the children in this book are infected by Herod's Syndrome. This illness begins by killing every child in the world. Then it brings them back. These children are not the same once they come back from the grave. They are creepy little vampires who need blood in order to survive.

This book is super twisted, but also s
Mar 28, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: audible
Creepy creepy creepy.
An excellent chiller of a book with no happy ending in sight!
Cody | CodysBookshelf
Oct 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
One day, out of the blue, all the pre-pubescent children in the world drop dead. Three days later, they come back to life — and the only thing that can keep them alive is blood. Desperate to keep their young ones, parents and family friends and relatives donate as much blood as possible . . . but soon enough, civilization breaks down, for this is a vicious cycle. A pint of blood is good for only an hour or so of life. And in the meantime, the children’s bodies are decomposing, despite the fact t ...more
May 25, 2014 rated it it was amazing
What would you do if your kids suddenly dropped dead? What if they came back and asked you for one thing, only one little thing to make them whole again? Would you give them anything for more time with them. Even if the time were measured not in years, months, weeks, or days, but in minutes? I shudder to think what would happen to anyone in that situation, let alone the entire world.

Suffer the Children was simply put one of the best horror novels I have ever read. I went into this book expecting
The gist. The world is hit by an epidemic called Herod's Syndrome. Where children who have not hit puberty suddenly die unexpectedly with very little notable symptoms.

The expression "Love is blind" I find really describes this book. And no I don't mean about finding your soul mate.

We follow varied POV's in this novel each from a different lifestyle but very similar approach to the lives of their children and this is where I find the expression "love is blind" works. After the loss of the chil
Now $9.99. I need to read this soon.


Currently on sale for Kindle for $2.99, this 2014 Stoker Award nominee sounds creepy as all get out. Get your copy here.
Sara Saif
May 12, 2020 rated it really liked it

It was ugly and horrifying and so effing intense.

This was the easiest to read horror book I've ever read. The ones I've read before were either too heavy on the characterization, too heavy on the science, or too heavy on the build-up. But not this one. It got right into it after a brief introduction to the lives of our major players and I liked this approach.

The plot peels one unpleasant layer after another as the actions and their reactions pile up. I was terrified but unable to stop reading, a

Hafsa Sabira
Mar 04, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
Not a fan of zombie or any kind of apocalypse but still I loved this novel. Imagine a blood thirsty parasite suddenly attacking all the children under puberty, causing them to die, only to wake them up later to become blood-thirsty vampire-like creatures! What will the parents do to save their children from dying again? Some may give up eventually but some will cross any mark of humanity to save their already-dead children.

The most praiseworthy part of the novel is the character portarayal which
Anna Janelle
Parents beware. This book will tug on your heartstrings and then callously rip out those heartstrings to feed to the world’s population of undead children.

Set to be released in May 2014, I received an advanced reader copy of this thrilling new horror from Netgalley. As a mother, I’m not exaggerating when I say that the first half of this book scared the bejeezus out of me; and, really, the first half of the book was just setting up the more traditional horror elements of the second half. This b
Belinda Frisch
Jan 01, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: horror
Suffer the Children by Craig DiLouie is anything but your typical “vampire” novel, and I mean that in the best possible way. A genesis tale of sorts, I think there’s a lot of life left in this literary world. I hope the author continues and makes this a series because to say that this book had me glued to the pages would be an understatement.

Humanizing, logical, and emotional, Suffer the Children is every parent’s worst nightmare come to life. What if all of the children in the world simultaneou
Apr 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I had no idea what to expect when I first picked up this book, I completely ignored the synopsis from the back of the book. As I read I really got into the story.

Here's a quick summary from Suffer the Children, children are dropping dead at random and parents are freaking out and nobody knows the cause of all these deaths. Later we find out it's called the Herod Syndrome, days after the children are have died soon enough they come back from the dead, hungry for blood. It's up to the parents if
John Wiswell
May 14, 2015 rated it really liked it
One of the most disturbing novels I've ever read. All the children on earth come down with a disease that makes them hunger for blood, but without it they become listless and go into death-like states. They're not monsters hunting people. It's their parents that are dangerous, because at first you give your daughter some of your own blood, but eventually you're tapped. What happens after a week when every child needs still more?

Maybe I'm getting more cynical as I age, but this is the first novel
Jul 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I read this book in two days because I didn't want to put it down. I was supposed to be reading it with a group of bookstagrammers, and before I knew it, I had it finished. I usually read when I go to bed, and often that means I'm up until 2 or 3am reading. When a book really has me hooked I lose all track of time, and a lot of times I end up finishing a book without realizing that I've read it so quickly. This one had me from the very beginning, and I loved it all the way to the end.

I'm not goi
Benoit Lelièvre
Mar 03, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Giving this novel a perfect score feels oh, so wrong, but I have to admit that it's one of the best novel I've ever read about the apocalypse. One that's both impossibly imaginative and terrifyingly real. It's bleak and horrific and emotionally draining like nothing else, but it's also a terrific novel. You gotta give credit where credit is due.

You thought THE STAND was a great apocalypse novel? My friends, THE STAND is Norman Rockwell and SUFFER THE CHILDREN is Picasso's Guernica. It's a novel
Sep 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
A terrifying premise for any parent to consider.

DiLouie creates an incredibly dark and disturbing world that demonstrates the deep and unrelenting limits that a parent will go through for their children.

This is the most fascinating and unique use of vampirism that I have seen in a long time, because the horror has nothing to do with the affliction itself. The fear, the horror, is not about the creatures who require blood to survive, it's about the parents who will do anything to ensure their chi
May 28, 2014 rated it really liked it
Great premise, genuinely creepy at times. I had a hard time putting this apocalyptic horror novel down . . . and this is coming from someone who is sick and tired of this subgenre, for the most part. Recommended!
Sep 19, 2015 rated it really liked it
Wow this story was so surprising to me that I got so engrossed in it. The kids need blood to survive and what parents will do to get them the blood. Yikes scary stuff!
Oct 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
I think this is another book that I need to use caution upon my rating; I do NOT, I would NOT ever say that I "like" this book so my rating for Goodreads which suggests "I really liked it" doesn't reflect my honest feelings, yet I must admit this book gave me what I look for in a horror/apocalyptic book. My 4 starts went to this book for that reason, for keeping me engaged and giving me chills and goriness what I wanted.

Yes, this book is gory and pretty graphic in its descriptions - this book i
Apr 04, 2014 rated it liked it

Many books, set in the concrete gooeyness of other books of the same subject matter and genre try endlessly to avoid the stereotypical. They try clever, and often successful tactics as an attempt to avoid the mundane. The successes are plentiful. This one unfortunately stumbles, falls, and claws, bleeding, at, of all things HBO series.

The premise is simple, and twisted. A disease descends across the world, grounding children below the age of adolescence to a halt. All cognitive abilit
May 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: arc-review
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
All because of a stupid bunch of helicopter parents who can't face reality, just like I figured.

A solid four-and-a-half stars for this great book that successfully combines literature, horror and science (and we've all seen writers try and fail miserably). If that is your type of book, don't even waste your time with the rest of the review, just go order immediately.

If you need a bit more convincing, welcom
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Craig DiLouie is an author of popular thriller, apocalyptic/horror, and sci-fi/fantasy fiction.

In hundreds of reviews, Craig’s novels have been praised for their strong characters, action, and gritty realism. Each book promises an exciting experience with people you’ll care about in a world that feels real.

These works have been nominated for major literary awards such as the Bram Stoker Award and

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