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Alexandrea Weis Author Interview

Alexandrea Weis Author Interview

Realm follows young Roxanna as she becomes the wife of Alexander the Great and is swept away by history. What was the inspiration for the setup to this emotional story?

I have wanted to write her story since I was sixteen and first saw Roxana mentioned in a history book about Alexander the Great. A professed history geek, Alexander has always fascinated me, but it was her story I wanted to tell. She lived beyond him, saw the breakdown of power, and in the end was a victim of his conquests and fame. She was forgotten by history, but I believe her role in his life, and the war of the generals, was important. I wanted people to know that Alexander was married to a woman who I am sure had to have remarkable fortitude and courage to not only travel with his army, but survive his generals.

Roxana is an intriguing and well developed character. What were some ideas you wanted to explore with her character?

She developed out of years of study of Alexander. This was a man who had women, the powerful daughters of kings, diplomats, and wealthy men, thrown at him, but he never married any of them. He took the hand the daughter of a mere chieftain, and instead of setting her up in a palace, as was the custom, Alexander took her with him across the world. I wanted to highlight her strength and intelligence, qualities he must have admired, but also show her powerlessness in a world where women had no voice. She must have been frustrated at not being recognized because of her sex, but I wanted her to rise above her limitations and influence the most powerful man in the world. I do not subscribe to the fact that she was a non-essential wife as many historians believe. I wanted to make her a unique woman who could have changed the course of history.

I enjoyed the portrayal of Roxana and Alexander’s relationship. Was their relationship planned or did it develop organically while writing?

The ups and downs in their relationship were built around the history of his campaigns, and how hard it must have been for her as a woman loving a man and competing with his army, his generals, and his other lovers. I also had to factor in how women were treated in ancient Greece, along with Alexander’s great respect for women. The rest developed organically, but like any relationship that goes through great hurdles it either gets stronger or falls apart. I like to believe theirs got stronger. After all, Alexander died when she was seven months pregnant with his only heir. It was also nine months after the death of his dear friend Hephaestion. For me, it was obvious he turned to her in his grief, and that told me a great deal about where they were at his end.

What is the next novel that you are working on and when will it be available?

My next novel is a thriller and the first in a new series, called The Secret Brokers. It is about Dallas August, a man who runs an organization of elite spies for hire who steal secrets and sells them to the highest bidder. He is blackmailed into going on a mission to steal an important secret from an unsuspecting woman and ends up in the middle of a war between two powerful kingpins. The Secret Brokers releases 4/7/2020.

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Based on a true story.

When her homeland is conquered by the mighty Alexander the Great, Roxana—the daughter of a mere chieftain–is torn from her simple life and thrown into a world of war and intrigue.

Terrified, the sixteen-year-old girl of renowned beauty is brought before the greatest ruler the world has ever known. Her life is in his hands; her future his to decide.

Without formal education or noble blood, Roxana is chosen by the Greek conqueror to be his bride. Soon she comes to know profound happiness and unyielding desire in her warrior’s arms.

However, being the king’s consort comes at a heavy price. To survive her husband’s treacherous kingdom, she must endure continuous warfare, deadly plots, jealous rivals, victory-hungry generals, and the stigma of being a barbarian. Persian blood will keep her from claiming the grandest title of all—queen—but her reign will seal the fate of an empire.

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Realm by [Weis, Alexandrea]

Realm familiarizes the reader with another side of Alexander the Great that not many are familiar with. Alexander the Great is viewed as a conqueror and a hero in the mainstream world. The concentration is often placed on his triumphs, while his weaknesses are almost always overlooked. Realm exposes you to more than the basic history of Greek Kingdoms. The Greek icon makes a good part of the plot but the main focus is on Roxana.

Roxana is something akin to the girl next door in modern-day times. Leading a simple life dedicated to her family. Roxana’s father was a chieftain, which earned him some level of respect. After Alexander invades her home, and the Greek conqueror tries to get acquainted with her father, Roxana meets Alexander the Great.

The author is able to artistically develop each character so that you can easily empathize with them. The character development in this story is something that I truly appreciated as they all continue to change and develop as the story progresses. Alexandrea Weis’s characters are intriguingly diverse and meticulously developed.

Roxana was a beauty that was admired in her homeland. That is one of the many things that attracts Alexander to her. Her beauty aside, Roxana is dynamic and posses an emotional depth that I rarely see in characters. She was of mixed race, something that was not common. Alexander ultimately took Roxana as his wife despite the girl being against the idea of leaving her family behind. The book is fascinating to follow as one not only enjoys reading about ancient Greek history but we’re also treated to a view of ancient life from a perspective that is not often explored. I was not ready for the turbulence that would accompany Roxana after the marriage. Realm is an emotional roller coaster that is both raw and engaging.

One could feel the bride’s emotions through Alexandrea Weis narration. We hear about Alexander’s other women, Roxana’s struggles as she tries to keep up with her husband’s status especially during battles, and dealing with her self-esteem. Even with the challenges in the marriage, one could still see that Alexander the Great loved his wife. I loved that trait in him. Through Roxana, we see how impactful the strength of a woman can be. The girl from Persia had a few moments where she seemed to be falling off but pushed on and beat all odds. I appreciate the author’s portrayal of women in the book. Morella was among the most captivating characters in Realm. I enjoyed reading Realm and would recommend it to readers who enjoy well developed historical fiction with heart-wrenching romance.

Pages: 483 | ASIN: B07NQC9RSY

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