The Danilov Quintet, #1

Jasper Kent’s Twelve: Russia 1812 is a nice blend of dark fantasy and historical fantasy. Set during the time of Napoleon’s reign and war with Russia, is filled with lots of detail dealing with war. The story focuses on Captain Aleksei Danilo whose assignment is first to help stop the invasion of Napoleon with the help of the mysterious twelve men. As the story progresses, the captain and the Russians find that the Twelve’s plans are more horrible than what Napoleon has in store for the world and must find a way to stop them. I recommend this for fans of history that would like a twist of supernatural entwined with it or for those who would like to escape the more stereotypical romantic vampire stories out there. The story starts off slow, but has some wonderful creepy moments. I do wish the author would’ve focused less on the captain at times regarding his affairs of the heart, but this is a minor quibble. I rate this one a strong 4.5 stars. It is a very good debut work and I am looking forward to reading the sequels.  

Book Blurb for Twelve

Twelve is the story of Aleksei Ivanovich Danilov, a captain in the army of Tsar Alexander I, sworn to defend Russia against the onslaught of Napoleon's Grande Armée in the autumn of 1812. He joins forces with a band of twelve Wallachian mercenaries, whose zeal and success in slaughtering the French invaders seem too good to be true.

Soon, Aleksei unearths the gruesome secret behind the Wallachians' abilities, and discovers that they make little distinction between Frenchman or Russian. His fight becomes not simply one against Napoleon, but against a far more dangerous enemy.

Night Owl Reviews Sep, 2010 4.50