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Broken Sky


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A coming-of-age thriller set against a sci-fi backdrop, with top-notch worldbuilding and wormhole technology.

In John Harvey's Broken Sky, we're introduced to Jack Scatter and his group of friends. Jack lives on an immense space habitat called Cirrus, largely courtesy of wormhole technology, which has revolutionized travel, supply chains, and virtually every aspect of human life. Even people's phones have tiny wormholes connected to water reservoirs, allowing for on-the-go drinking water whenever it's needed. Unfortunately, not all is as idyllic as it might seem.

Broken Sky features all the major elements of a thriller wrapped in excellent science fiction: a mystery (will the world truly end when Isaac Newton predicted?), a relatable hero, and a nemesis that wields seemingly endless power (Pieter Reynald, owner of the corporation Armenau). The best part, though, is that Harvey never strays from his sci-fi roots. His worldbuilding is wonderful, explaining how wormhole technology works in his universe, letting us explore the riches of Cirrus, and even giving us the proverbial sneak peeks at the havoc humanity has wreaked on Earth.

One element I truly appreciated about Broken Sky is the fact that its characters make sense within the context of the story. The teenagers look, think, and act like teenagers; the adults don't make incomprehensibly stupid decisions for the purpose of plot; and motivations, while often shrouded, are ultimately believable. Honestly, Harvey's writing was impressive not simply as a good indie book, but as a novel in general. His work can compete with some of the best that mainstream publishers are putting out in the sci-fi world. I'm reminded of another author who made the jump from independent to worldwide publishing industry icon: Wool author Hugh Howey.

The only downside to Broken Sky, if there is a downside, is that it's the first in a series of books. So some of the mysteries remain frustratingly unresolved at the end of the novel. However, Harvey's page-turner pacing, well-written dialogue, and sense of balance between action and explanation more than make up for that frustration. I think Broken Sky is truly deserving of my first 5-star review.

Reviewed by

I am a self-published author, content writer at a digital marketing agency, and freelance writer/editor. On my website/blog, I write long-form reviews of books as well as short review blurbs for every book I read each year.


About the author

John Harvey is a First Nations author and part-time editor from Canada. He writes mostly science-fiction and fantasy. His first published series is The Chronicles of Cirrus. view profile

Published on May 07, 2021

Published by On-site Creative

100000 words

Genre: Science Fiction

Reviewed by