RIP Maurice Sendak

Admirers count the ways revered kids' author will be missed
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted May 8, 2012 4:04 PM CDT
Maurice Sendak in 1981.   (AP Photo/Thomas Victor, file)
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(Newser) – A sample of the tributes to Where the Wild Things Are author Maurice Sendak, who died today at 83:

  • Andrew Leonard, Salon: Parents who loved Sendak's books as kids (like Leonard) read them to their own kids with even greater zeal. Thus, "Sendak planted an immortal virus in the culture, a self-fulfilling prophecy of rumpus, an affirmation that the child’s-eye view of the world made total sense. I thank him dearly for it."
  • Peter Dobrin, Philadelphia Inquirer: "In both his portrayal of the terrors of being a child and the deep flaws of adults, Mr. Sendak was a throwback to an earlier era in children's literature, when 19th century books like like Heinrich Hoffmann's Der Struwwelpeter lacked the sweetness and justice of a well-ordered world. "

  • Margalit Fox, New York Times: 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 ..."
  • Daniel Handler, Lemony Snickets author, to AP: "It's almost impossible to overstate his importance. He's a North Star in the firmament of anyone who makes children's books, in particular for his dark and clear-eyed view of the world that was kindred to me when I was in kindergarten and kindred to me now. He gives neither the comfort nor the horror of sentimentality."

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