The dashing detective
Before I leave the subject of Australian writers I have to mention my all-time favourite (although we are talking entertainment rather than literature here, Kerry Greenwood, particularly for her Phryne Fisher series, set in the roaring Twenties, primarily in Australia.
The plotting's not great, but the characters are wonderful, particularly Phyrne herself. (I'm told the frocks are rather good too, although that's not my scene.) She lived in abject poverty in Melbourne, so she has the instincts of an alley cat for survival, but the Great War having killed off lots of eligible young males, her father is suddenly an English aristocrat, but while she enjoys the money, Phyrne's not cut out for the county set ...
In the first novel, Cocaine Blues, she gets her first serious case (after she's busted a county cricket toff for trying to steal a diamond necklace, from an English retired colonel ....
"The last time she had been fawned over with this air of distracted delight was when one county family thought that she was going to take their appalling lounge lizard of a son off their hands, just because she had slept with him once or twice. The scene when she declined to marry him had been reminiscent of early Victorian melodrama. Phryne feared she was becoming cynical."(p. 4)
The author suggests that choosing the Twenties was almost accidental, but it certainly allows full play for a wonderful female character - Phyrne flies planes, drives enormous powerful cars, and has her pick of the men, usually the exotic ones, and none of it seems historically anachronistic, while the Australian fawning over her title, ("the Hon.") gives her even more licence.
Probably my favourite of the 14 on my shelf (yes a full set - they might even be worth something one day) is Murder in Montparnasse, in which we learn that Phryne was an ambulance driver during the Great War.
Oddly enough the series is published broadly now in Australia (including on audio), and at least some have been translated into German, but none has been published in Britain. Any enterprising publishers out there?
(There's also a new series just started, and yes, I'm collecting those too, although it is not quite so much fun without the historical setting.)