|Born||citation needed]14 June 1972 [|
Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire, England, United Kingdom
|Occupation||Author and legal executive|
|Alma mater||University of Reading|
|Period||2008 – present|
|Genre||Fantasy and science fiction|
|Subject||Zoology and psychology|
|Notable works||Shadows of the Apt series|
Adrian Czajkowski (spelled as Adrian Tchaikovsky in his books) is a British fantasy and science fiction author. He is best known for his series Shadows of the Apt, and for his novel Children of Time.
Tchaikovsky's novel Children of Time won the 30th Arthur C. Clarke Award on 24 August 2016 at a ceremony in London and was described by author James Lovegrove as "superior stuff, tackling big themes – gods, messiahs, artificial intelligence, alienness – with brio".
Adrian Tchaikovsky was born in Woodhall Spa, Lincolnshire. He studied zoology and psychology at the University of Reading. He then qualified as a legal executive. He was employed as a legal executive in the Commercial Dispute Department of Blacks, Solicitors, Leeds. In December 2018 he became a full time writer.
In 2008, after fifteen years of trying to get published, Tchaikovsky's novel Empire in Black and Gold was published by Tor Books (UK) – an imprint of Pan Macmillan – in the United Kingdom. The series was later picked up for publication in America by Pyr Books. Tchaikovsky expressed desire that the Polish editions of his novels be printed under his real name, but these too used "Tchaikovsky".
Tchaikovsky has received the following literary awards and nominations:
This list is incomplete; you can help by adding missing items. (January 2022)
The series is set in a fictional universe populated by different "kinden". Each kinden is a fictional race of humans, named after (and having certain characteristics of) an insect. Kinden are typically divided into two categories: "Apt" and "Inapt". The Apt do not have magical abilities, but are able to understand, use and design mechanical devices. The Inapt have varying amounts of magical abilities, but cannot use mechanical devices, even those as simple as latches. The series focuses on the attempted conquest of the Lowlands by the Wasp-kinden empire.
Tchaikovsky revealed the story behind the Shadows of the Apt in an online essay entitled "Entering the Shadows" at Upcoming4.me.
Whilst studying at the University of Reading he ran a role-playing game called Bugworld. The game told the story of the insect-people of the Lowlands, under threat from the encroaching Wasp Empire. From this original scenario the entire series of books grew.
Tchaikovsky still uses role-playing games to help construct his stories, but now also uses live action role-playing, which assists in describing the numerous action and battle sequences in his books. Adrian is currently involved with the LARP game Empire.
Tchaikovsky has regularly expressed his intention in this fantasy series not to make science better than magic, or vice versa: "This is another key element, really: the magic/tech divide is a concept that turns up here and there in fantasy, but usually one side is good (mostly magic) and the other (dirty polluting tech) is bad. With the world of the kinden, they’re basically both as bad as the people who use them, whether it’s blood sacrifice in a Mantis-kinden grove or the Wasp Empire’s city-levelling weaponry."
The science fiction novel Children of Time (2015), ISBN 978-1447273288, describes a human expedition to a distant, terraformed planet. The expedition seeks to introduce a species of monkey into this new world, along with a nanovirus designed to raise these monkeys to human levels of sentience and intelligence within a few hundred years. This plan having gone wrong, a future generation of humans interacts with a super species of sentient spiders; the story follows the spider Portia and her species while they grow.
A sequel to Children of Time, titled Children of Ruin, was published in 2019. In it, a terraforming mission similar to the one portrayed in Children of Time encounters alien life in a newly-discovered planetary system.
This is an iron-age fantasy series in a world populated by various clans of shapeshifters.
Dogs of War is a speculative sci-fi action novel. (Head of Zeus, 2017), ISBN 9781786693884
Bear Head is a novel set on a partially terraformed Mars. (Head of Zeus, 2021), ISBN 978-1800241541
Shards of Earth is a space opera novel set after the destruction of the Earth by the mysterious alien "Architects". (Tor, 2021), ISBN 978-1529051889
Eyes of the Void is the forthcoming sequel to Shards of Earth. (Tor, 2022), ISBN 978-1529051933
Guns of the Dawn is the story of a common soldier at war, set in a world with the technology of muskets plus a smidgen of magic. (2015), ISBN 9780230770034
Spiderlight is a fantasy novel published by Tor.com in 2016. ISBN 9780765388360
Cage of Souls is a science fiction novel. (Head of Zeus, 2019), ISBN 978-1788547246. In this book, Stefan Advani - one of the last remaining humans - describes his dangerous journey across the varied landscapes of an ancient, dying Earth.
The Doors of Eden is a science fiction novel about parallel Earths. (2020), ISBN 978-1509865888.
Redemption's Blade (Solaris Books, 2018), ISBN 9781781085790, is the first book in a multi-author series. The series was continued with Salvation's Fire by Justina Robson and published on 4 September 2018.
Tchaikovsky's first Warhammer 40,000 novel Day of Ascension (2022), like his short story "Raised in Darkness" from Inferno! Volume 6 (2021), focuses on the insidious Genestealer Cults.
However, as the possibility of the Polish rights being sold seems extremely viable, there is an epilogue to this tale of Frankish ignorance, for in Poland, one would strongly assume, I may finally see my name in print in its unadulterated form.