Peter Robb


Listen to Peter Robb in an interview with the New York Times Book Review


Peter Robb talks about the style of M

You'll need Realplayer to hear the interview, or to see Peter.
If you don't already have it, click here for free download.


Peter Robb was born in Toorak in 1946 and grew up in Australia and New Zealand.

He went to Europe in 1971 and worked there variously as a nightclub bouncer in England, a philologist in Finland and a teacher in France, and travelled in Italy and other countries around the Mediterranean. In the mid-seventies he returned to Australia and for several years he taught English to immigrants and prisoners in Sydney and wrote for ephemeral radical papers.

In 1978 he set off for South America but stopped in Naples instead. He spent most of the next fifteen years in Naples and southern Italy, interspersed with sojourns in Brazil, and at the end of 1992 returned to Sydney.

He has taught at the University of Melbourne, the University of Oulu in Finland and the Instituto Universitario Orientale in Naples.

Midnight in Sicily was published in Australia in October 1996 and won the Victorian Premier's Literary Prize for non-fiction in 1997. It has been, or is soon to be, published in about eight other countries, including Denmark, Israel and Taiwan.

Peter Robb's biography of Caravaggio, titled simply M, was published in late October 1998 in Australia, and created considerable controversy on its publication in Britain in early 2000.

His collection of three pulp crime novellas - Pig's Blood and other fluids was published in December 1999.

'so amoral and blackly comic that one feels that they are deliberately infected spitballs thrown against the virginal and pretentious window of Australian literature. After reading the novellas one has a sense that, for Robb, too much excess is never enough.' Louis Nowra, Sydney Morning Herald

In September 2003 Duffy & Snellgrove published a new edition of Midnight in Sicily with a new foreword by the author, and in November 2003 released a new edition of M to coincide with the exhibition of Caravaggio's works touring Sydney and Melbourne.

Robb's most recent book, A Death in Brazil, was published by Duffy & Snellgrove in October 2003, and will be reprinted in paperback in October 2004. It has recently been named The Age Non-Fiction Book of the Year for 2004.


Email Duffy and Snellgrove