Catherine Asaro is the author of 14 science fiction novels of The Skolian Empire, also known as novels of The Ruby Dynasty. The series began with her debut novel Primary Inversion (Tor, 1995; exclusive rewritten release, Baen, 2008 e-library), a Compton Crook finalist. Catch the Lightning (Tor, 1996) won the Sapphire Award for Best Novel, while The Last Hawk (Tor, 1997) was a Nebula Finalist. The Radiant Seas (Tor, 1999) won the Romantic Times Book Club Reviewers Choice Award for Best SF Novel, was a finalist for the HOMer Award, Best SF Novel and was a Runner Up for the Sapphire. Ascendant Sun (Tor, 2000) won the Romantic Times Book Club Reviewers Choice Award, was the Sapphire runner up, and was nominated for the PEARL Award, Best Futuristic. The Quantum Rose (Tor, 2000) won the Nebula, the Affaire de Coeur Award for Best SF, and placed third for the Sapphire. Spherical Harmonic (Tor, 2001) was a finalist for the Affaire de Coeur and Romantic Times Book Club. The Moon's Shadow (Tor, 2003) won the RRA-L award for Best Romantic Novel outside the Romance Genre and received a PEARL award honorable mention, Best SF. Skyfall (Tor, 2003) was a 2004 RITA Award finalist for Best Paranormal Romance, won the Romantic Times Book Club, was a PEARL finalist, and placed third in the Sapphire. Schism (Tor, 2004) was a PEARL finalist. The latest books in the series are The Final Key (Tor, 2005), The Ruby Dice (Baen, 2008) and Diamond Star (Baen, 2009), which is accompanied by a music CD of the same name (Starflight Music), featuring lyrics and vocals by Catherine.
Her near future thrillers are The Veiled Web (Bantam Spectra, 1999), which won the National Reviewers Choice Award, the Prism Award for Best Futuristic, and the HOMer Award for Best SF Novel; The Phoenix Code (Bantam Spectra, 2000), a PEARL finalist for Best Futuristic; Sunrise Alley (Baen, 2004), a Finalist for the RRA-L award for Best romantic novel outside the genre; and Alpha (Baen, 2006).
Her Lost Continent Series is fantasy: The Charmed Sphere (Luna Books, 2004), a PEARL Finalist, Best Fantasy/Magical; The Misted Cliffs (Luna, 2005), a RITA finalist, Best Paranormal Romance; The Dawn Star (Luna, 2006); The Fire Opal (Luna, 2007); and The Night Bird (Luna, 2008).
Her short fiction includes the novellas "Aurora in Four Voices" (Hugo and Nebula finalist and AnLab, HOMer, and Sapphire winner, 1999), "A Roll of the Dice (Hugo and Nebula finalist, AnLab and HOMer winner, and Sapphire runner-up, 2001), "Moonglow" (in Charmed Destinies; Sapphire Winner and Romance Readers Anonymous finalist, 2004), "Walk in Silence" (Hugo and Nebula finalist and AnLab and Prism winner, 2004), "Stained Glass Heart" (in Irresistible Forces, Asaro, ed.; Sapphire and PEARL finalist, 2005), "City of Cries" (in Down These Dark Spaceways, Resnick, ed., Prism winner for both novella and Best of the Best, Buyers Best winner, and Sapphire Runner Up, 2005), and "The Spacetime Pool" (Nebula winner, 2009). Her novelette "Soul of Light" (in Sextopia, Tan, ed.) was a Gaylactic Spectrum finalist, 2002, while "The Shadowed Heart" appeared in Best New Paranormal Romance (Guran, ed.) and her short story "Ave de Paso" appeared in Fantasy: the Best of 2001 (Silverberg and Haber, eds.). Other short fiction has appeared in Christmas Forever (Hartwell, ed.), Flights: Extreme Visions of Fantasy, (Sarrantonio, ed.), The Journey Home (Kirk, ed.), Baen's Universe (Flint, ed.), Lace and Blade (Ross, ed.), and in Analog. She edited the anthology Irresistible Forces (NAL, 2004).
Born in Oakland, California, Catherine grew up in El Cerrito, north of Berkeley. She studied ballet from age of five (and trained in classical piano), successfully pursued London's Royal Academy of Dance syllabus through the first professional level and enrolled at UCLA as a dance major. Then she discovered she loved math and science. She went on to earn a BS with Highest Honors from UCLA, a masters in physics from Harvard, and a doctorate in chemical physics, also from Harvard. While pursing her degrees, Catherine continued to dance, founding the Mainly Jazz Dancers and Harvard University Ballet. Perennially on deadline, she now focuses more on her writing than research, but she often speaks on the intersection of science and art at venues such as the Library of Congress and Georgetown University. She is also proud to coach the Howard Area Homeschoolers, whose students have distinguished themselves in numerous national math programs, including the USA Mathematical Olympiad, MathCounts, and the American Regional Mathematics League. She served two terms as president of the Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America, Inc. (SFWA). She is married to John Kendall Cannizzo, an astrophysicist at NASA. They have one daughter, a ballet dancer who studies maths at Cambridge University in England.