Maurice Bernard Sendak (June 10, 1928 May 8, 2012) was an illustrator and author of children's books; best known for his international hit Where the Wild Things Are (1963), which was adapted for film twice. He started work as an illustrator in the very late 1940s, and began writing as well towards the end of The '50s.
Sendak's work was sometimes controversial. Where the Wild Things Are received complaints that it was too grotesque and scary for young children (although few of these complaints seemed to come from actual children, who typically enjoyed it), and his In the Night Kitchen has been banned or censored several times for its mild (and utterly non-salacious) use of nudity. Despite— or perhaps because of— all this, he became one of the most popular and beloved children's writers of his era.
In addition to his art and writing, Sendak was an advisor for the Children's Television Workshop (creators of Sesame Street), and worked with Jim Henson on an adaptation of Sendak's Bumble Ardy stories for the show. He also worked on the animated special Really Rosie, which was based on his books, and Seven Little Monsters.
Works with a page on this wiki:
- Little Bear series (1957-1968, written by Elsie Minarik)
- Pierre: A Cautionary Tale in Five Chapters and a Prologue (1962)
- Where the Wild Things Are (1963)
- Really Rosie (1975)
- Seven Little Monsters (1977, animated in 2000)
- The Light Princess (by George MacDonald) (1977, original story from 1864)
Other selected works:
- A Very Special House (by Ruth Krauss, 1953, Caldecott Medal Honor book)
- The Wheel on the School (by Meindert DeJong, 1954, Newbery Medal winner)
- Along Came a Dog (by Meindert DeJong, 1958, Newbery Medal winner)
- Alligators All Around (1962)
- Chicken Soup with Rice (1962)
- One Was Johnny (1962)
- Mr. Rabbit and the Lovely Present (by Charlotte Zolotow, 1962, Caldecott Medal Honor book)
- Zlateh the Goat and Other Stories (by Isaac Bashevis Singer) (1966)
- In the Night Kitchen (1970)
- Outside Over There (1981)
Tropes in his other works:
- Out-of-Clothes Experience: In In the Night Kitchen, the main character, in a dream, "fell through the dark, out of his clothes." Interestingly, everything is completely uncensored, causing what is in all other regards a fun, innocent children's book to regularly make "top banned book" lists.
- Shout-Out: In In the Night Kitchen, three identical Oliver Hardy figures appear as bakers preparing cakes.