Thanks for your comment Dmitry. ORM is indeed very handy (and Laravel's Eloquent is very powerful), but you need to know how to use it, or which of it's features will obstruct your app's scalability.
My point is that if you go with layers then all ORM stuff should end up in persistence layer. Your controllers and business logic should know nothing about ORM
Hmm I get what you are saying. Do you mean that I shouldn't refer to DB table fields (like author_id) in the business logic layer?
More than that. You should not even have access to the database on the business logic layer. It should be done in persistence. With your current approach you pass ORM models into the view level where everyone will have direct access to the database because of access to ORM model. Somebody can make something like $model->delete() in the view template and mess the things up.
To prevent it you need to decouple persistence level and all other levels. In the persistence level itself you are free to use Eloquent, Doctrine, raw SQL queries, etc...
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