Also writes as: Peter Amos ; Petramos
Born: Established: 30 Sep 1885 North Adelaide ; Died: 1955 Chatswood
A. E. Martin was born in North Adelaide in what is now the Cathedral Hotel, and grew up in Orroroo. He attended Prince Alfred College in Adelaide, and later worked for the Adelaide Critic, where he met C. J. Dennis. The pair then founded and co-owned the weekly newspaper, Gadfly, which folded in 1909.
In 1912 Martin left for the fairgrounds of Europe, where Houdini became his mentor, and he later became involved in promoting circus events and vaudeville acts back in Australia. After World War I forced the closure of the Woman's Weekly Travel Agency which he had established in the 1930s, he wrote and published magazines for soldiers and children's comics.
Martin only launched his career as a novelist when he was over fifty, when in 1942 he won an award from the Australian Women's Weekly for Common People. Common People and Sinners Never Die were picked up by the American publisher Nimmo, and released in the United States to universal acclaim. A number of his other mystery novels were published in America and Britain, although to Martin's disappointment The Misplaced Corpse only ran to one Australian edition in Martin's lifetime. Many of the characters in his novels were drawn from his experience of show business and circus life. Martin also had short stories published in the US mystery magazine Ellery Queen and wrote radio plays and serials for George Edwards' productions. Martin died of cancer in 1955.