Dorothy Porter, 54, an award-winning poet best known for crime novels set in verse, died Wednesday from complications of breast cancer in Melbourne, Australia.

Ms. Porter wrote six collections of poetry and two young-adult novels in addition to her five verse novels. One verse novel, The Monkey's Mask, was made into a film in 2001 starring Kelly McGillis and Abbie Cornish. The 1994 novel, about a lesbian private detective who falls in love with a murder suspect, also became a play and was recently adapted for radio by the BBC.

Her newest novel, El Dorado, was shortlisted this year for the Prime Minister's Literary Award for fiction.

- AP