Sex, War, Intrigue & Vampires: A combination for a captivating story that spans generations and Jasper Kent’s Third Section has them all.
The third novel in Jasper Kent’s enthralling, chilling and acclaimed historical vampire sequence — The Danilov Quintet.
Russia 1855. After forty years of peace in Europe, war rages. In the Crimea, the city of Sevastopol is besieged. In the north, Saint Petersburg is blockaded. But in Moscow there is one who needs only to sit and wait — wait for the death of an aging tsar, and for the curse upon his blood to be passed to a new generation.
As their country grows weaker, a brother and sister — each unaware of the other’s existence — must come to terms with the legacy left them by their father. In Moscow, Tamara Valentinovna Lavrova uncovers a brutal murder and discovers that it is not the first in a sequence of similar crimes, merely the latest, carried out by a killer who has stalked the city since 1812.
And in Sevastopol, Dmitry Alekseevich Danilov faces not only the guns of the combined armies of Britain and France, but must also make a stand against creatures that his father had thought buried beneath the earth, thirty years before.
The Third Section by Jasper Kent is the third book in the Danilov Quintet. I have not read the first two, but I never felt lost, or confused by it. I identified with Tamara, though I really wished her sections at the end of the book didn’t make me cry so much. However, I just wanted to shake Dimitri silly for his poor wife. The names got a little confusing since I’m not as familiar with Russian designations, and several characters had multiple aliases. I liked that this exact problem is what provided to be a clue to one of the characters in identifying one of the voordalaki.
In the Third Section, Kent makes you re-think that romantic idea of vampires (or “voordalak”) living peaceful quiet lives. His vampires are more than just humans transformed, they are truly horrible, twisted fiends. They can still be killed with sunlight, a stake to the heart and beheading, but their nature is more sinister than in many other series that I’ve seen. Blood must be pumping when they consume it, and fear in their victim gives them an intoxicated climax.
The scenes dealing with the war weren’t my favorite, though I think my husband would enjoy most of it. It didn’t bog the story down, and let us see into some of the character’s motivations. Despite Tamara & Raisa working in a brothel, the sex scenes were titillating, not raunchy. I really wish there would have been a bit more description that set the scene to the time period besides one mention of a corset and giving dates and specific battles. It felt like with a few small changes it could have been set in the cold war instead of the 1850s. Several times the characters would be pulling the strings of the others, but you got a real sense that none of them really were the ones in charge, no matter what they thought.
The characters of Third Section drew me in and made you care about what happened to them, good or bad. While I haven’t read the first two, I really want to find out what happens in the next installment of the Danilov Quintet.
Thirteen Years Later
The Third Section
The People’s Will (2013)
The Last Oprichnik (2014)
Also reviewed by: Fantasy Book Critic,
I discovered this series earlier this year and was intrigued. I’ve read many books which feature “good guy” vampires and now I’m ready for the “mean” ones.