Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Mary Robinette Kowal  

Pen Name: None

Genre: Fiction

Audience: Adult;


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Illinois Connection

Kowal lives in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Mary Robinette Kowal is the author of ''The Glamourist Histories'' series of fantasy novels. She has received the Campbell Award for Best New Writer, three Hugo awards, and the RT Reviews award for Best Fantasy Novel. Her work has been a finalist for the Hugo, Nebula, and Locus awards. Stories have appeared in Strange Horizons, Asimov’s, and several Year’s Best anthologies as well as in her collection Scenting the Dark and Other Stories from Subterranean.Mary, a professional puppeteer and voice actor, has performed for LazyTown (CBS), the Center for Puppetry Arts, Jim Henson Pictures and founded Other Hand Productions. Her designs have garnered two UNIMA-USA Citations of Excellence, the highest award an American puppeteer can achieve. She also records fiction for authors such as Kage Baker, Cory Doctorow and John Scalzi.

Selected Titles At Your Library

Shades of milk and honey /
ISBN: 0765325608. OCLC Number:

Tor,. New York :. 2010.

In a Jane Austen-inspired alternate universe, two sisters, one beautiful and the other skilled in the glamour arts, test the limits of their gifts on an unscrupulous suitor.

Glamour in glass /
ISBN: 0765325616. OCLC Number:

Tor,. New York :. 2013.

Newlyweds Jane and David Vincent travel to Belgium, and their ability to create invisibility via glamour makes them a target for emperor Napoleon's returning forces.

Without a summer /
ISBN: 0765334178. OCLC Number:

. .

Regency-era glamourists Jane and Vincent Ellsworth, while visiting Jane's family, hope to bolster Melody's chances for a good marriage by accepting a commission from a prominent London family, a job that embroils them in an international crisis.

Valour and vanity /
ISBN: 0765334186. OCLC Number:

. .

"Mary Robinette Kowal's Valour and Vanity is a Regency version of a heist movie with a healthy dose of magic sprinkled in. After Melody's wedding, the Ellsworths and Vincents accompany the young couple on the their tour of the continent. Jane and Vincent plan to separate from the party and travel to Murano to study with glassblowers there, but their ship is set upon by Barbary corsairs while en route. It is their good fortune that they are not enslaved, but they lose everything to the pirates and arrive in Murano destitute.Fortunately, one of the gentlemen from the ship is a local banker and arranges for a line of credit and a place to live. Relieved, the Vincents begin the work for which they have come to Italy.All is proceeding apace until a solicitor arrives at their house and charges them with illegal trespass. Jane and Vincent produce letters from their banking friend, but they are all forgeries, and worse, he has used their forged letters to clean out their funds in England. Now, Jane and Vincent owe money to a number of people in town and are forbidden from travel. They manage to find some small work, but it is obvious to both of them that this path will not maintain them for long. Instead, Vincent hatches a reckless plan to get their money back. The ensuing adventure is a glorious envisioning of all the best parts of heist narratives, but in a Regency setting with magic"--

Of noble family /
ISBN: 0765378361. OCLC Number:

. .

"The magical adventure that might result if Jane Austen walked on the grimmer side of the Regency"--

Ghost talkers /
ISBN: 0765378256. OCLC Number:

. .

"Ginger Stuyvesant, an American heiress living in London during World War I, is engaged to Captain Benjamin Harford, an intelligence officer. Ginger is a medium for the Spirit Corps, a special Spiritualist force ... Ginger and her fellow mediums contribute a great deal to the war efforts, so long as they pass the information through appropriate channels. While Ben is away at the front, Ginger discovers the presence of a traitor. Without the presence of her fiancé to validate her findings, the top brass thinks she's just imagining things"


John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer, 2008

For Want of a Nail

  • Hugo Award, 2011

    Speaking Engagements

    Speaking Engagement Availability (Yes)

    You can contact the author via the "Contact" page on her website or by writing her at Mary Robinette Kowal P.O. Box 221298 Chicago, IL 60622