The Illuminae Files Wikia
Kerenza IV.png
"Am I not merciful?"
This article contains plot details and potential spoilers for the The ILLUMINAE Files series! If you have not begun reading the books or are not too far into the story, please refrain from reading or proceed with caution.

Katya Kowalski is a young girl living on Kerenza IV at the time of the BeiTech invasion.


Katya is assumed to have grown up on Kerenza IV with her mother and father. But when BeiTech Industries attacks the illegal mining colony there, she loses track of her mom and dad. Asha Grant finds Katya, and finding that she's not registered as a citizen with BeiTech, helps to hide her.

Asha takes good care of Katya, always giving her her own rations and bringing various gifts and toys back to where she is hiding, to keep her happy. Still, Katya sometimes asks after her mother and father. Her father passed away in the initial invasion, while her mother is a survivor on the refugee ships, and happens to be in the same support group as Kady Grant, Asha's cousin. Asha believes both of Katya's parents as well as her own cousin are dead, and so she witholds the information from Katya.

After a surprise inspection by BeiTech ground pounders, one of which includes Rhys Lindstrom, Katya is found hiding in the ceiling. However, Asha and Rhys attack and dispose of the other soldiers before they can take any action or tell anyone else.

When Asha and Kady reunite over the SOS broadcast, they discover that Kady knows Katya's mother, Martha Kowalski. Kady is more than excited to tell Martha that her daughter is alive, as Martha had previously believed that her whole family was dead and had had a difficult time dealing with it.

During the fight between BeiTech forces and the combined forces between the Kerenza rebels and the survivors arriving in the former BeiTech ship Mao, Katya is accidentally shot by a BeiTech ground pounder while she runs towards Asha. Rhys and Asha try to help her to no avail, until Rhys's sergeant Oshiro orders her medics to assist the young girl.

At the end of the book Katya is fully recovered from her wound, and makes a final appearance in the courtroom to watch the verdict of the case between the BeiTech and the Illuminae Group - so she'll be able to see what justice looks like.


Katya is bold and curious, sometimes venturing out from the safety that Asha's provided to look for things to eat or play with. She is very cheerful as well, trying to keep Asha's spirits up even in the face of the oppressive BeiTech occupation and near-starvation.


  • Katya loves playing with the little action figures from the gift shop near the geeball field on Kerenza IV.
  • Asha likes to call Katya "the cleverest mouse", in order to drill it into Katya's head that she must be quiet and never get caught.