Peter Temple

Peter Temple (10 March 1946 – 8 March 2018) was an Australian crime fiction writer, mainly known for his Jack Irish novel series. He won several awards for his writing, including the Gold Dagger in 2007, the first for an Australian.

Peter Temple
Peter Temple at Oslo bokfestival in 2011
Peter Temple at Oslo bokfestival in 2011
Born(1946-03-10)10 March 1946
South Africa
Died8 March 2018(2018-03-08) (aged 71)
Ballarat, Victoria, Australia
GenreMurder mystery, thriller, crime fiction
Notable worksJack Irish series


Peter Temple was an international magazine and newspaper journalist and editor. Born in South Africa in 1946, he moved to Sydney, Australia in 1980 and in 1982 moved to Melbourne to become the founding editor of Australian Society magazine. He also taught journalism, editing and media studies at university. He played a significant role in establishing the professional editing course at RMIT, Melbourne.[1]


Temple turned to fiction writing in the 1990s. His Jack Irish novels (Bad Debts, Black Tide, Dead Point, and White Dog) are set in Melbourne, and feature an unusual lawyer-gambler protagonist. In 2012, the Australian ABC Television and the German ZDF produced the first two as feature-length films with Guy Pearce in the title role under the series title Jack Irish.[2] Temple also wrote three stand-alone novels: An Iron Rose, Shooting Star and In the Evil Day (Identity Theory in the US), as well as The Broken Shore and its semi-sequel, Truth. In 2015 he published "Ithaca in My Mind" in the Allen and Unwin Shorts series. His novels have been published in 20 countries.[3]

He wrote the screenplay for the 2007 TV film Valentine's Day[4]


In 2010, Peter Temple won the Miles Franklin Award for his novel Truth. He has also won five Ned Kelly Awards for crime fiction, the latest in 2006 for The Broken Shore, which also won the Colin Roderick Award for best Australian book and the Australian Book Publishers' Award for best general fiction. The Broken Shore also won the Crime Writers' Association Duncan Lawrie Dagger (Gold Dagger) in 2007.[5] Temple is the first Australian to win a Gold Dagger.[6]

ABC Television broadcast an adapted telemovie of The Broken Shore on 2 February 2014.

Personal lifeEdit

Temple was married to Anita and had a son, Nicholas. He died after a brief battle with cancer in Ballarat, Victoria, Australia, on 8 March 2018 at the age of 71.[7]

Awards and nominationsEdit

Miles Franklin Award 2010 Truth (winner)
Australian Book Industry Awards Australian General Fiction Book of the Year 2006 The Broken Shore (winner)
Colin Roderick Award 2006 The Broken Shore
Duncan Lawrie Dagger 2007 The Broken Shore (winner)
Miles Franklin Award 2006 The Broken Shore (longlisted)
Ned Kelly Awards Best Novel 2006 The Broken Shore (joint winner)
2003 White Dog (winner)
2001 Dead Point (joint winner)
2000 Shooting Star (winner)
Ned Kelly Awards Best First Novel 1997 Bad Debts (joint winner)


Jack Irish novelsEdit

Other novelsEdit

Book reviewEdit




  1. ^ "Temple, Peter", AustLit (subscription required)
  2. ^ "Jack Irish", ABC TV
  3. ^ Peter Temple Author. ABC website. Retrieved 20 May 2013
  4. ^ report. Retrieved 6 January 2020
  5. ^ "Aussie author wins crime writing prize"[permanent dead link], The Canberra Times, 6 July 2007]
  6. ^ Harrison (2007)
  7. ^ "Acclaimed crime writer Peter Temple dies, aged 71". Sydney Morning Herald. 11 March 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2018.