This month I had the pleasure of interviewing Harriet Arden Byrd (aka H.A. Byrd), author of the new fantasy novel Aru’s Realm. Like the novel itself, this “realm” is hard to shoe-horn into a category. A young girl who has caught the interest of a “master of magic,” Aru’s realm in some ways resembles the 19th century, including steam trains and horse-drawn carriages. In other ways, Aru’s realm is one we have never seen before, not only because it includes monsters and magic but also because it has many strong women and lacks the concept of war.
TZ: Your work has many roots in traditional epic fantasy but is distinct in having a pacifist bent–and also in centering on strong female characters.