The Fire Opal
Author: Catherine Asaro
Deep in the sun-drenched desert, priestess Ginger-Sun carries the power of shape mages. And whispers
abound: Is she descended from the beloved Sunset Goddess, or are her nighttime rituals filled with
wickedness? Ginger herself is uncertain, until a stranger is left for dead at her feet. Thence her magic
begins to burn. Fate makes Ginger the stranger's wife and therefore a target for those who would murder
this man to crown another -- and force her magic into twisted ferocity. For unless Ginger masters her
dark powers, violence will rein in Taka Mal -- and in her soul.
Catherine Asaro was born in Oakland, California, and grew up in El Cerrito, just north of Berkeley. She
received her Ph.D. in chemical physics and M.A. in physics, both from Harvard, and a B.S. with Highest
Honors in chemistry from UCLA. Among the places she has done research are the University of Toronto
in Canada, the Max-Planck-Institut Astrophysik in Germany, and the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for
Astrophysics. Her research involves using quantum theory to describe the behavior of atoms and
molecules. Catherine was a physics professor until 1990, when she established Molecudyne Research,
which she currently runs.A former ballerina, Catherine has performed with ballets and in musicals on both
coasts and in Ohio. In the 1980s she was a principal dancer and artistic director of the Mainly Jazz
Dancers and the Harvard University Ballet. After she graduated, her undergraduate students took over
Mainly Jazz and made it into an organization at the college. Catherine still teaches ballet in
Maryland.Catherine's fiction is a successful blend of hard science fiction, romance and exciting space
adventure. She has published nine novels, seven of which belong to her Saga of the Skolian Empire.
Catherine has been nominated for many awards. Among those she's won are the Nebula Award for best
novel of 2001 for The Quantum Rose and the Romantic Times Award for Best SF Novel for both Spherical
Harmonic and Ascendant Sun. Her husband is John Kendall Cannizzo, an astrophysicist at NASA. They
have one daughter, a young ballet dancer who loves math.