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Reviewed by Pikasho Deka for Readers' Favorite
Beyond the Hostile Sky: After the Breaking is a young adult sci-fi/fantasy novel by Karen J. Laakko. Three explorers arrive in the seemingly desolated lost realm of Aktinos, seeking to learn what happened and what led to its downfall. After finding an old book containing the histories of Aktinos' wars with the Skiai, the explorers eagerly open the book to discover its secrets. The narrative then shifts to a battle zone where a young Aktinan warrior named Makheteon distinguishes himself amongst his peers, leading to his promotion. After a while, he finds himself approached by a young civilian who reveals to Makheteon the elemental powers of the ancient guardians. However, infighting and betrayal run deep amongst the Aktinans, which may lead to devastating consequences. Can Makheteon push his limits and accomplish what's asked of him?
Transport yourself into a sprawling world filled with ancient magic, warring kingdoms, and tantalizing mysteries with Beyond the Hostile Sky. Karen J. Laakko's worldbuilding is simply magnificent, grand in scale, and rich in lore. The author drops the reader into a world that feels lived-in, with eons of history and mythos woven into the narrative that make it all the more riveting to read. The blend of fantasy and sci-fi elements feels refreshing, and it provides readers of both genres with something to be excited about. I found the characters well-developed and compelling. I thoroughly enjoyed the book and look forward to reading the sequels. Recommended to sci-fi/fantasy lovers.