'Where The Wild Things Are' author Sendak dies

Maurice Sendak, the author who introduced millions of children worldwide to mischievous Max and his monsters in "Where The Wild Things Are," died Tuesday, his publisher said. He was 83.

"He died on Tuesday in Danbury, Connecticut. The cause was complication from a recent stroke," Erin Crum, at HarperCollins in New York, told AFP.

Critics say it is impossible to imagine children's literature without Sendak, a New Yorker whose darkly original works across a 60-year career have been translated into dozens of languages.

He "wrenched the picture book out of the safe, sanitized world of the nursery and plunged it into the dark, terrifying and hauntingly beautiful recesses of the human psyche," according to The New York Times.

The New York Daily News said he'd possessed "the highest order of genius."

Although the 1963 "Where The Wild Things Are" is the best known, being turned into a popular movie in 2009, Sendak penned and illustrated nearly 50 books, including the acclaimed "Little Bear" series.

Memorable works include "Pierre" about a troublesome child whose constant refrain throughout the book is "I don't care!"

Other perennial favorites are "Really Rosie," "In the Night Kitchen," and "Outside Over There." In his later career, he put his visual imagination to work as a set and costume designer for major opera and ballet productions in Britain and the United States.

He won the prestigious Caldecott prize for children's literature, the Newbery medal, the international Hans Christian Andersen Award, a National Book Award, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award and a National Medal of Arts.

President Barack Obama read "Where the Wild Things Are" to children at the annual White House Easter egg roll on April 9, mimicking the monsters in a loud voice.

Another presidential accolade came from Bill Clinton in 1996, who described Sendak as having "singlehandedly revolutionized children's literature."

"Where The Wild Things Are," in which Max, wearing a wolf suit, is sent to his bedroom by his mother, but leaves for a mysterious land where he tames enormous monsters, was controversial at first.

Some libraries refused to stock the book. Sendak later said he modeled the toothy monsters on his own relatives.

In an interview with NPR radio, Sendak, who discovered late in life that he was gay, said he'd never wanted children and that his own childhood had been filled with anxieties and frustrations.

If he did have children, he said, it would have to be a daughter, because "girls are infinitely more complicated than boys." If he had a son, he said, he'd abandon him in a public place "where somebody who needs a kid would find him and he would be all right."

Born to Polish-Jewish immigrant parents in Brooklyn, New York, he grew up in the shadow of the Holocaust in which many of his relatives had perished.

However, he was uninterested in being a practicing Jew, saying his "gods" were the great authors and composers. "These are wonderful gods who have gotten me through the narrow straits of life," he told NPR.

He said old age brought him sadness because friends "die and I can't stop them. They leave me and I love them more." But of his own eventual death, he said, "I'm ready, I'm ready."

Actor Elijah Wood, who starred in movies based on another children's classic, J. R. R. Tolkien's "The Lord of the Rings," Tweeted: "Maurice Sendak has left us for the land of the wild things. May he carry on adventuring."

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • State of emergency as super typhoon batters Micronesia
    State of emergency as super typhoon batters Micronesia

    An emergency was declared in the Micronesian state of Chuuk Wednesday as Super Typhoon Maysak cut a destructive path across the central Pacific leaving at least five dead and extensive damage. Crops were ruined and water supplies contaminated, with fears people faced starvation if they did not get aid soon, after the violent storm took three days to cross the vast Federated States of Micronesia (FSM). "Governor Johnson Elimo declared a state of emergency (in Chuuk) due to damage by Typhoon …

  • Nissan launches its “Virtual to Reality” GT Academy here in the Philippines
    Nissan launches its “Virtual to Reality” GT Academy here in the Philippines

    The Filipino Gran Turismo gamer just became eligible to become a Pro Race Car driver as Nissan Philippines Inc. launched its GT Academy here in the Philippines. The object is to find the best Grand Turismo players in both the online qualification process and participating in the live events after which they’ll compete with each other in National Finals to see who gets to attend the 3 month Race camp.  The winner gets to stay in the UK near Silverstone and will take part in UK national and club …

  • Osmeña wants electricity exempted from VAT
    Osmeña wants electricity exempted from VAT

    Sen. Sergio Osmeña III wants electricity to be exempted from value added tax under a proposed measure that will amend the National Internal Revenue Code of 1997 and the Reformed VAT Law. He said the move aims to ease the burden of the public in paying high electricity rates in the country. “VAT on electricity is another burden on the already over-taxed shoulders of our people, especially those whose incomes are barely enough to cover their basic needs. Osmeña, chairman of the Senate …

  • No lotto draws starting tomorrow until Easter Sunday
    No lotto draws starting tomorrow until Easter Sunday

    No lotto tickets will be sold and no lotto draws made starting tomorrow, Maundy Thursday, up to Easter Sunday in observance of Holy Week. In a statement, Jose Ferdinand Rojas II, acting Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) chairman and general manager, said the selling of lotto tickets and lotto draws will resume on April 6,  Monday. “We thank all Lotto players for your trust and confidence in the PCSO games, and we count on your continued support of our efforts to raise funds for …

  • Quake rocks C. Visayas
    Quake rocks C. Visayas

    A magnitude-3.2 earthquake rocked parts of Central Visayas yesterday. State seismologists said the quake was an aftershock of a powerful tremor that hit the region in 2013. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said the quake occurred at 7:54 a.m. Its epicenter was located 10 kilometers  southeast of Buenavista, Bohol. Phivolcs director Renato Solidum said the quake was an aftershock of the magnitude-7.2 earthquake that hit Bohol on Oct. 15, 2013. …

  • Super howler nears Phl
    Super howler nears Phl

    A typhoon that has devastated islands in the Pacific is forecast to become a category 5 monster howler as it barrels toward the Philippines this week. The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said Maysak will be named Chedeng when it enters the Philippine area of responsibility tonight or tomorrow morning. In an interview, PAGASA weather forecaster Gener Quitlong said the forecast track of Maysak may still change depending on the movement of …

  • Philips Gold finally shines

    Philips Gold made 11 service aces on its way to beating Mane ‘N Tail, 25-19, 27-25, 25-16, for its first victory in the Philippine Super Liga (PSL) All-Filipino Coinference Monday night at The Arena in San Juan.Former College of St. Benilde standout Rossan Fajardo had six aces as part of her 10-point output as the Lady Slammers finally barged into the win column after losing their first two matches.Ex-National University star Myla Pablo led Philips Gold with 14 points highlighted by 12 kills, …

  • Turkish Airlines starts direct Manila-Istanbul flights 3 times a week

    Turkish Airlines, Turkey’s flag carrier, launched on March 30 its thrice weekly direct, non-stop flights between Istanbul and Manila at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) Terminal 1 and plans to operate a daily service between the two cities, eventually, announced Chief Marketing Officer Ahmet Olmustur. Last November 2014, the Philippines and Turkey signed an expanded air services agreement granting Turkish carriers three frequencies per week to Manila and Clark. In accordance with …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options