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I Can Jump Puddles

by Alan Marshall

It amazed me that they would imagine I would never walk again. I knew what I was going to do. I was going to break in wild horses and yell ‘Ho! Ho!’ and wave my hat in the air, and I was going to write a book like The Coral Island.

Every so often, there comes a story so brilliant and lively and moving that it cannot be left in the past. I Can Jump Puddles is Alan Marshall’s story of his childhood – a happy world in which, despite his crippling poliomyelitis, he plays, climbs, fights, swims, rides and laughs.

His world was the Australian countryside early last century: rough-riders, bushmen, farmers and tellers of tall stories – a world held precious by the young Alan.

I Can Jump Puddles is one of Australia’s best loved books, and is known around the world. It was made into an award-winning film by Czechoslovakian director Karel Kachyna in 1970.

#39 in  Australia’s Top 100 Favourite Homegrown Reads


01 January, 1955

About Alan Marshall

Alan Marshall was born in Noorat, Victoria in 1902 and educated in Terang. He lived in Melbourne for some time, and then travelled extensively around Australia. He recounted the story of his life and travels in a three-part autobiography: I Can Jump PuddlesThis is the Grass and In Mine Own Heart.


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