Review Blog

Oct 05 2018

The Magic Pudding by Norman Lindsay

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HarperCollins, 2018. ISBN 9781460756201
Written a century ago to settle an argument with his friend Bertram Stevens who believed children liked to read about fairies while Norman Lindsay believed they liked to read about food, The Magic Pudding is now celebrating its 100th anniversary with this new slipcover edition.
Written in four slices, it tells the story of Bunyip Bluegum the koala, Sam Sawnoff the penguin and Bill Barnacle the sailor who have a magic pudding called Albert who reforms into a whole pudding no matter how much of him is eaten.
Albert is cranky, has bad manners and is always demanding that he be eaten because that is the only thing gives him pleasure. As they travel together, they meet Possum and Wombat who want to have Albert for themselves and the newly-formed Noble Society of Pudding Owners then embark on a series of adventures trying to defend Albert from being stolen regardless of the dastardly tricks that the Pudding Thieves try.
With such an original, funny and intriguing plot it is no wonder that The Magic Pudding is considered one of five great children's classics in Australian literature along with Snugglepot and Cuddlepie, Blinky Bill, The Muddleheaded Wombat and Dot and the Kangaroo. This collector's edition also includes a section, 'From the Publisher's Archives' that contains a fascinating collection of correspondence between Norman Lindsay and his publishers, Angus and Robertson. The letters have come from the A and R Archives held in the Mitchell Library and were selected with the assistance of Lindsay's granddaughter, Helen Glad, who also wrote a short biography of him especially for this book.
Perfect for starting a child's collection of quality Australian stories so they learn about their literary heritage.
Barbara Braxton

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