Friday, 18 May 2012

Maurice Sendak, author of Where The Wild Things Are, dies aged 83

Children’s author Maurice Sendak died on the the 8th of May 2012, renowned as the writer who changed the face of children’s books. One in particular, Where the Wild Things Are, published in 1963, made him internationally famous, selling over 17m copies. The book became a hit movie in 2009. For the first time Sendak painted a picture of children as they really were. No longer were American children clean and tidy, mannerly and well-behaved. Instead they were wild and angry, sometimes fearful and experienced real emotions both good and bad. He was the recipient of numerous prestigious awards including the Caldecott Medal, the Hans Christian Anderson Award and a Laura Ingalls Wilder Medal in 1983. President Bill Clinton awarded Sendak a National Medal of the Arts in 1996 and in 2009 President Obama read Where the Wild Things Are for the Easter Egg Roll. Writing for The New York Times on May 9th, Margalit Fox tells how Sendak cherished the letters that individual children sent him. One such letter from an eight-year-old boy read: “Dear Mr. Sendak, How much does it cost to get to where the wild things are? If it is not expensive, my sister and I would like to spend the summer there.”

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