If I said, “Maurice Sendak passed away today,” that might not mean much to a lot of you. But what if I said, “The man who wrote and illustrated Where the Wild Things Are passed away today”? Now you know who I’m talking about, right?
Maurice Sendak, author and illustrator of the children’s book classic, Where the Wild Things Are, died today, May 8, 2012, at the age of 83. In his lifetime, he wrote and/or illustrated dozens of children’s books, including the recent picture book Bumble-Ardy, which spent 5 weeks on the New York Times children’s bestseller list in 2011.
But, he is best known and remembered for Where the Wild Things Are. The book was first published in 1963, and was a 1964 Caldecott Medal Winner for the Most Distinguished Picture Book of the Year. Who could forget Max in his wolf suit, sent to bed without supper, then sailing off until he “came to the place where the wild things are”? And they made him their king, and Max and the wild things danced, and hung from trees, and they carried him on their shoulders. Until Max got lonely, “and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all.”
So he sailed home.
In addition to the Caldecott Medal, Mr. Sendak received many other awards, including the National Medal of Arts in 1996. You can read more about him in the New York Time‘s article, “Maurice Sendak, Author of Splendid Nightmares, Dies at 83.”
Thanks, Mr. Sendak. Rest in peace.