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Reviewed by Stephanie Chapman for Readers' Favorite
Bryan Davis' Across Astral Realms is a science-fiction fantasy broken into three sections. In Escape, Megan, a freedom fighter, faces execution by Captain Tillman if she doesn't reveal where the Dragon's Eye is. With the help of the AI system, Emerson, Megan lands on Delta Ninety-Eight after an attack from the Astral Dragon kills the rest of the crew. Child slavery was prevalent on the planet, and Megan helped Thorne's slaves escape. In the second part, Marooned, Megan crash-lands on Delta Ninety-Five, a planet with active volcanoes, and several months pass. But Megan, Oliver, Perdantus, Dirk, and Crystal decide to leave in search of the Astral Dragon. The rest of the children stay and are happy to live in relative peace. In the last part, Departure, the crew plans to return to Delta Ninety-Eight to end child slavery and reunite with Megan's mother, but they face powerful adversaries in Thorne and Admiral Fairbanks.
Bryan Davis writes an exciting story full of amazing suspense. On the surface, Megan seems to be an unbelievable heroine with her mechanical aptitude and righteous actions to end slavery. She tries not to rely on anyone helping her, and the others are quick to point this out. Dirk’s actions and personality were relatable to his young age, especially with his ability to access ventilation shafts with ease. Several supporting characters surprised me with their subversive actions. For instance, I thought Thorne was a potential ally, but his insistence on using child slaves was unforgivable. The plot is full of several twists that make it unpredictable and engaging. The vivid descriptions of the alien landscapes and intense action scenes made it easy for me to visualize every moment. Across Astral Realms will appeal to anyone who enjoys science-fiction stories full of action and fantasy powers.