Suffer the Children
Publisher: Gallery, Threshold, Pocket Books
Publish Date: May 20 2014
Rating: 4 out of 5
"But Jesus said, Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. – Matthew 19:14"
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 return from the grave…and ask for blood. And with blood, they stop being dead. They continue to remain the children they once were…but only for a short time, as they need more blood to live. The average human body holds ten pints of blood, so the inevitable question for parents everywhere becomes: How far would you go to bring your child back?
I have read other titles by Craig DiLouie and am a fan of his particular writing style which is mature, intelligent and character based rather than 'all out' action driven. Suffer the children is a very different, creative retelling of the vampire tale which although not all gore, blood and guts is definitely creepy and had me feeling queasy from many of the scenes depicted.
Herod's Syndrome has killed every pre-pubescent child worldwide and nothing can be done to save them. However, they are able to reanimate with sacrifices made by their loved ones.
Suffer the Children follows several families and is told from their perspective. There is a gradual build up of tension as the characters personalities, and values change with the ongoing desperation to obtain the 'medicine' needed to keep their children alive, and ultimately how far they will go in order to achieve their aim.
Very dark and bleak, plausible and realistic, DiLouie's world descends into chaos as the governing forces lose control, and society rapidly spirals into a lawless apocalyptic nightmare.
I highly recommend Suffer the Children to all horror fans and anyone interested in a thought provoking read about human nature and how far we, as a race, are willing to compromise our humanity for the sake of our loved ones, and to what cost.
Thank you Permutted Press via NetGalley for giving me the opportunity to review this title.