Exclusive Interview: “The North Wind” Author Alexandria Warwick


For her new romantic fantasy saga The Four Winds, author Alexandria Warwick took inspiration from both the fairytale Beauty And The Beast and the myth of Hades And Persephone.

In the following email interview, Warwick discusses the first installment of this four book set, The North Wind (paperback, Kindle, audiobook).

Alexandria Warwick The North Wind The Four Winds Series

To start, what is The North Wind about, and what kind of a world is it set in?

The North Wind is loosely inspired by the myth of Hades And Persephone and the fairytale Beauty And The Beast. A woman is stolen away to the harsh, perpetually frozen realm of the dead. It is there she must figure out a way to kill the king (her captor) and escape, all without losing her life — and her heart — in the process.

Where did you get the idea for this story?

I had been toying with the idea of a set of stand-alone fantasy romance novels, but since all of my writing is in part inspired by mythology, it was a matter of finding some mythological figure that would connect the stand-alones. I stumbled across the Four Winds in Greek mythology — four brothers — and I realized I could focus each novel on one of the brothers falling in love. I then went one step further and decided to pair a fairytale with the mythological elements in each novel. Hades And Persephone and Beauty And The Beast have enough similarities that it made sense to combine these two influences.

It sounds like The North Wind is a romantic fantasy story, but, as you just said, one that’s more inspired by myths and fables than, say, the politics of Game Of Thrones or the medieval adventures of The Lord Of The Rings. Is that accurate?

Absolutely! There are some adventure elements that occur, like battles and sword (spear?) fights, as well as fantasy elements such as magic, but the core of the story is the romance.

So how romantic of a story is this? Is it super mushy, is it erotic, what?

The romance is neither super mushy nor erotic. (Well, there are undoubtedly some mushy parts!) But the romantic arc builds slowly. Readers who are expecting frequent on-page smut will be disappointed. The scenes are very intentional in building the emotional connection between Boreas (the hero) and Wren (the heroine).

And why was this just the right amount of romance for this story?

As for the right amount of romance, it really depends on the characters and what I believe would push them nearer toward one another (while also building tension). Personally, I love the tension almost more than the moment the characters finally come together. It’s fun to write [laughs].

As you said, The North Wind was inspired by Beauty And The Beast and the myth of Hades And Persephone. What else to do see as being big influences on this story? And I don’t just mean literary influences, but non-literary ones as well: movies, TV shows, games…

Well, I wouldn’t be a proper Millennial if I didn’t say Disney’s Beauty And The Beast, the animated version.

Sometimes a lot of the worldbuilding / concepts I create aren’t from a specific source, but rather a compilation of all the stories I’ve consumed over time (whether that be video games, TV shows, etc.). I enjoy playing video games like Zelda, and my favorite show is Avatar: The Last Airbender. I absolutely love the darkness of the Studio Ghibli films, as well as the emotion and beauty of films by Makoto Shinkai. I’m also very drawn to stories with underdog heroes and heroines, such as Mulan, How To Train Your Dragon, Kung Fu Panda, etc. I’m really big into animation if you couldn’t tell [laughs].

Now, you’ve already said The North Wind is the first book in The Four Winds Series. Is it safe to assume the other three will be The South Wind, The East Wind, and The West Wind?

Yes, it is definitely safe to assume that.

And is that the order they’ll be out in?

The order will be: The West Wind, then The South Wind, and lastly The East Wind. At the moment, the release schedule is set as two books per year over a two-year period. The West Wind is slated for November 2024, followed by The South Wind in May 2025, then The East Wind in November 2025.

Alexandria Warwick The North Wind The Four Winds Series

So, what was it about this story that made you realize it needed four books to be told fully?

At first, my intention was to write each book as a stand-alone focusing on one couple. However, after drafting book three (The South Wind) I realized that there would be an overarching plot to the series, once characters from earlier books began to show up in the later ones.

Though the overarching plot doesn’t really emerge until The South Wind. But if I was to give one of the Four Winds his happily ever after, it seemed only fair that I would give them all their happily ever afters. (Eventually.)

Upon hearing that The North Wind is the first installment in a four book series, some people will hold off reading North until all of the books are out, and some will further decide that, when that happens, they’ll read all of them back-to-back. But is there any reason why you think people shouldn’t wait? Or that they should but then not binge the series?

If readers are looking for a true stand-alone fantasy romance, they can safely read The North Wind and be done with it. There is no need to wait because the story is resolved and there are no cliff hangers, save perhaps one or two unanswered questions which are addressed in book two, The West Wind.

However, there is more of a connected storyline between books three and four, so I would maybe suggest readers read The North Wind and The West Wind as soon as they are published, but then wait to binge The East Wind and The West Wind.

Speaking of books that are part of a series, you previously wrote three books in The North Series. Is there any connection between those books and The North Wind, aside from you obviously having a preference to going north, apparently?

Perhaps it’s that I’m from Florida, so naturally I gravitate toward cold climates?

But in all seriousness, there is no crossover whatsoever. The North Series is YA epic fantasy inspired by Inuit mythology. The Four Winds Series is adult fantasy romance inspired by fairytales. Readers who enjoy YA fantasy may like The North Series (even though it’s currently unfinished), but any romance that shows up is a subplot, not the main focus.

Earlier I asked if The North Wind had been influenced by any movies, TV shows, or games. But to flip things around, do you think North — and, by extension, The Four Winds Series — could be adapted into a movie, a show, or a game?

This is actually a question I was thinking about recently, funnily enough.

I am a huge fan of animation as an art form and story medium. I think The North Wind would work beautifully as an animated movie or potentially limited series. I think the medium of animation would lend to the dark, romantic story very well.

And, if someone wanted to adapt The North Wind into an animated movie or show, who would you want them to cast as the main characters’ voices?

For the voice actress I always imagined a woman with a lower register to play Wren. I’m also a fan of Christian Bale as a voice actor (think Howl from the English dubbed version of Howl’s Moving Castle…). No shame [laughs].

So, is there anything else you think people need to know about The North Wind?

If you are someone who knows a lot about Greek mythology, I’ve hidden a ton of Easter eggs in reference to other Greek myths, gods, and creatures throughout the novel. Some of it is very subtle though.

Alexandria Warwick The North Wind The Four Winds Series

Finally, if someone enjoys The North Wind, what novel of someone else’s that that you read recently, and liked, and is in the same vein, would you suggest they read while waiting for The South Wind to come out?

I am currently reading The Serpent And The Wings Of Night by Carissa Broadbent, and I am super invested. Think Hunger Games but with vampires. And romance, of course.



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