Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Maurice Sendak: Where the Wild Things Were

I was six years old when Maurice Sendak's iconic book, "Where the Wild Things Are," was released in 1963. I ate up the book, after I had read and re-read it over and over--and over again.

My mother was appalled. "This is a sick book," she said. "How can you possibly like that!?"

That, of course, made me love the book even more.

When I hit age 17, and began working at one of our local public libraries, it was the first book I showed to five and six year olds who came to the library looking for books to read. All of them loved it--male, female and even a couple of monsters who showed up too.

Sendak's other books were also wonderful, including "In the Night Kitchen," "Alligators All Around," and "Seven Little Monsters."

I also loved Sendak's drawings for the deeply moving "Little Bear" series. The animated cartoon version of "Little Bear," released in the 1990s through a Canadian animation company, beautifully captured Sendak's style.

But now, Maurice Sendak has gone away...leaving his wild things for us to read and enjoy.


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