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Hardcover Suffer the Children Book

ISBN: 073940296X

ISBN13: 9780739402962

Suffer the Children

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Format: Hardcover

Condition: Good


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Book Overview

This description may be from another edition of this product. Innocence dies so easily. Evil lives again . . . and again . . . and again. One hundred years ago in Port Arbello a pretty little girl began to scream. And struggle. And die. No one heard. No one saw....

Customer Reviews

6 ratings

The sins of the fathers...

Suffer the Children is the first book I ever read by John Saul and this book, his 1977 debut, automatically established him as a master of horror in my eyes! This book is bloodcurdling and I certainly would NOT recommend it those who love children! A tale of a horrific curse, a father’s brutal attack on the youngest of his two daughters, madness, and, literally, the murders and torture of several children, Suffer the Children is a horrifying story that will attach itself to the nightmares of any first-time readers! And it all began with the shocking murder of a little girl by her very own father, a hideous tragedy that occurred a hundred years earlier. Suffer the Children is a great book for horror fanatics like me. But, because of how grim and bleakly terrifying it is, I must offer readers this warning: Read at your own risk! If you like this book, and you want some other real chillers by John Saul, there are 3 others I highly recommend: The Unloved, The God Project, and Midnight Voices.


This was a fantastic, well-written book. I couldn't quit thinking about it after I read it. Even though, as some reviewers have stated, it does leave things somewhat unresolved, it stills tells a terrific horror story. Then ending is just a classic Saul ending.

A chilling, truly disturbing horror classic

While John Saul is not held in the highest of regard by many horror fans, he is the man who first introduced me to the genre. Some of his later novels did indeed become pretty repetitive, but his first novel, Suffer the Children, is a dead-on, unflinching classic. This was the first truly scary book I ever read; I was probably around twelve at the time, and I remember staying up into the wee hours of the morning to finish it and then finding it almost impossible to get to sleep. Reading it again now, it still possesses much of the power it possessed years ago. It is a tale of a family curse, murder, schizophrenia, general unhappiness, and gruesome, frightening events. Long ago, the scion of the Conger family killed his daughter, supposedly bringing a curse down upon the succeeding generations of his family. Now, Jack Conger fears the curse is real. In a drunken rage, he physically assaults his youngest little girl Sarah. While he struggles to remember what exactly happened that day and grows increasingly estranged from his long-suffering wife, his daughter exists in a quasi-comatose state, living in her own silent fantasy world. The Congers look at their first daughter as a true blessing through all of their pain--Elizabeth is mature beyond her years and takes care of her little sister with great love and kindness. When several local children begin to disappear, though, the Congers' delicately balanced world finally turns completely upside down. This is a pretty scary novel, largely because the horror centers around the two young sisters Elizabeth and Sarah. The description of the gloomy woods around the home and the truly dangerous embankment nearby help produce a great dark atmosphere, but Saul's description of a series of horrible events is especially unsettling. The story gets pretty gruesome at one point, and I think some horror writers would not be bold enough to go as far as Saul did. Saul committed himself fully to this novel and dared to describe everything in great detail; combine that with his incredibly effective characterization of the two sisters and you get a true horror classic in every sense of the word. Saul hooks you securely in his clutches and drags you down with him into the pits of depravity. The ending did not provide me with a complete feeling of closure, but I certainly have no quarrel with it; in fact, the evil Saul so vividly describes almost defies comprehension and thus necessitates the type of ending Saul chose to give us. I would highly recommend this novel to any horror fan--Saul creates a psychological atmosphere of real terror that essentially oozes out of the pores of each page.

the scariest book i've ever read

The first time I read this book was about 15 years ago. I was so scared, I couldn't sleep for weeks, I have never forgotton how scary the little girl elizabeth was, and her giving the children sand sandwiches to eat.


Jack and Rose Conger feel they have found the ideal town to raise their two daughters, Sarah, 11 and Elizabeth, 13. At the opening of the story, Sarah has been mute for over a year and enrolled in a special program. Elizabeth appears to be an unremarkable preteen until...her parents find a portrait of a girl in their attic who bears a strong resemblance to Elizabeth! From the time that picture is displayed, Elizabeth undergoes a change of personality. She lures a few local children into a cave where they are left to starve. She rarely entered the cave and when she did, she flogged the children and gave them a dead cat to play with. Matters reach a head when her sister is found dragging the arm of a child who had died. Sarah is subsequently institutionalized. She remained in an institution for 15 years. When she and Elizabeth are reunited 15 years later, the mere mention of "Beth" sends Sarah back into mute fear. Who WAS Beth? And who was the child in the portrait? What became of the children who were lured into the cave? And what of Elizabeth, their instrument of doom?

It`s all about children.

This book is dealing with the children, their way of thinking and nobody who is somebody could do it better than John Saul. Neither Freud. It`s not really a horror novel but it contains such gore that would make certain weak people nervous. That`s probably the reason that doesn`t exist a movie called "Suffer The Children". Not yet.
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