Being the Adventures of Bunyip Bluegum
and His Friends Bill Barnacle and Sam Sawnoff
Written and Illustrated by Norman Lindsay (1879 – 1969)
The Magic Pudding is a classic of Australian children’s literature. While it is an Australian children’s book, it is enjoyed by the child in all of us.
The story takes place in Australia where three friends own the Magic Pudding. It’s a magical pudding because no matter how often it’s eaten, it always reforms so you can eat it again. This attracts Pudding Thieves who do their best to steal it.
Slices not Chapters
Since the story is about a pudding, it’s naturally divided into 4 Slices instead of 4 Chapters. The story contains many short songs throughout. They vary from fun rhymes describing a character’s mood to how they’re acting. You’ll also find a sea song popping up every so often in The Magic Pudding.
First published in 1918, The Magic Pudding has continued to be reprinted over the years.
- In 1985 Australia Post issued a postage stamp with an illustration from The Magic Pudding. It was part of a set of five commemorating children’s books.
- The 2008 edition celebrated the 90th anniversary of the book.
- In 2000 an animated feature-length film The Magic Pudding was released with the voices of John Cleese, Toni Collette, Hugo Weaving, Geoffrey Rush and Sam Neill and John Laws. It failed financially no doubt because it didn’t stay true to the original story and the very poor quality of the animation.
This is a frontways view of Bunyip Bluegum and his Uncle Wattleberry. At a glance you can see what a fine, round, splendid fellow Bunyip Bluegum is, without me telling you. At a second glance you can see that the Uncle is more square than round, and that his face has whiskers on it. …
The Society of Puddin’-owners were up bright and early next morning, and had the billy on and tea made before six o’clock, which is the best part of the day, because the world has just had his face washed, and the air smells like Pears’ soap. …
After our experience of yesterday,’ said Bill Barnacle as the company of Puddin’-owners set off along the road with their Puddin’, ‘we shall have to be particularly careful. For what with low puddin’-thieves disguising themselves as firemen, and low Wombats sneakin’ our Puddin’ while we’re helpin’ to put out fires, not to speak of all the worry and bother of tryin’ to get information out of parrots and bandicoots an’ hedgehogs, why, it’s enough to make a man suspect his own grandfather of bein’ a puddin’-snatcher.’ …
This is what I call satisfactory,’ said Bill, as they sat at breakfast next morning. ‘It’s a great relief to the mind to know that them puddin’-thieves is sufferin’ the agonies of remorse, and that our Puddin’ is safe from bein’ stolen every ten minutes.’
‘You’re a bun-headed old optimist,’ said the Puddin’ rudely. ‘Puddin’-thieves never suffer from remorse. They only suffer from blighted hopes and suppressed activity.’ …