Peter Doyle (writer)

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Peter Doyle
Maroubra, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
GenreDetective fiction
Literary movementPulp Fiction
Notable worksThe Devil's Jump

Peter Doyle (born 1951) is an Australian author, musician, and visual artist. He lives in Newtown, New South Wales, and works for Macquarie University where he teaches Print Media Production and as a part-time curator of Sydney’s Justice and Police Museum.


Peter Doyle was born in Maroubra, Sydney, New South Wales, and grew up in Sydney's eastern suburbs, which provides much of the setting for his fiction work. He has a Bachelor of Arts (Communications) from UTS and a PhD in Media and Mass Communications on the renderings of virtual space in early popular music recording from Macquarie University (2002). He also maintains a research interest in comics and the graphic novel, the history of twentieth century popular music, as well as crime writing, both in Australia, and overseas.

He worked variously as a taxi driver, musician, and teacher prior to his first publication, Get Rich Quick in 1996, which won him Australia's prestigious Ned Kelly Award for Best First Crime Novel in 1997. He followed this with another successful sequel, Amaze Your Friends, which won him another award, the Ned Kelly Award for Best Crime Novel in 1998. His third title, The Devil's Jump, released in 2001, was a prequel, and was set in Sydney in the closing days of World War II.

His curatorial work at the Sydney Justice and Police Museum has seen him curate two major exhibitions, ‘Crimes of Passion’ (2002–2003), and ‘City of Shadows: inner city crime and mayhem, 1912-1948’ (November 2005-February 2007), both of which were social histories of inner-city twentieth century Sydney from the point of view of crime scene photography.

His musical style is a mixture of Sydney blues, rockabilly, country and pub rock scenes, and his interest in music is a strong influence in his fiction writing.


  • Co-winner of 1997 Ned Kelly Award for Best First Crime Novel for Get Rich Quick[1]
  • Winner 1999 Ned Kelly Award Best Crime Novel for Amaze Your Friends[1]
  • Association of Recorded Sound Collections (ARSC) 2006 award for Best Research in Record Labels and General History
  • 2006 National Trust/Energy Australia Heritage Award in the Interpretation and Presentation, Corporate and Government division



Title Publisher
1996 Get Rich Quick Minerva
1998 Amaze Your Friends Random House
2001 The Devil's Jump Arrow
2015 The Big Whatever Dark Passage


Title Publisher
2004 The Currency Companion to Music and Dance in Australia Currency
(co-authored with John Whiteoak and A Scott Maxwell)
2005 City of Shadows: Sydney Police Photographs, 1912-1948 Historic Houses Trust of NSW
2005 Echo and Reverb Wesleyan University Press: University Press of New England
2009 Crooks Like Us Historic Houses Trust of NSW
2022 Suburban Noir: Crime and mishap in 1950s and 1960s Sydney NewSouth

Other articles[edit]

  • Writing Sound: Popular music in Australian Fiction, Altitude, Issue 8, 2007
  • Signs and Wonders: Little Richard in Australia, 1957, Meanjin, Vol.65, No.3, 2006
  • Public eye, private eye: Sydney police mug shots, 1912-1930, Scan, vol 2, number 3, December 2005[2]
  • Lost City Found: interview with Luc Sante, Scan, vol 2, number 3, December 2005[3]
  • From "My blue heaven" to "Race with the Devil": echo, reverb and (dis)ordered space in early popular music recording Popular Music, May 2004 23/1 pp. 31–49
  • Three way stretch, UTS Review, November, 2000 6/2 pp. 126–140
  • Flying saucer rock'n'roll: the Australian press confronts early rock'n'roll music Perfect Beat, July, 1999, 4/3, pp. 24–47
  • The socio-semiotics of electricity substations in Social Semiotics, No.1, 1991.

Doyle has written feature articles, reviews and short pieces for The Bulletin, HQ and The Sydney Morning Herald. He has also been a columnist for Max and Sydney City Hub.


  1. ^ a b "Ned Kelly Awards". Australian Crime Fiction Database. Retrieved 15 September 2007.
  2. ^ "Public eye, private eye: Sydney police mug shots, 1912-1930". SCAN. Retrieved 7 August 2016.
  3. ^ "Lost City Found: an interview with Luc Sante". SCAN. Retrieved 7 August 2016.

External links[edit]