Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Maurice Sendak

A well-known figure of the children's book world passed away Tuesday.
Maurice Sendak was 83 years old. He said that he never meant to write for children. He just wrote.

Of all his books, my favorite is Outside Over There.

While I love this story, it is a somewhat frightening tale. Dark and guilt ridden (if only Ida had been watching the baby, the goblins wouldn't have kidnapped her!), it may be too much for young listeners. 

All is set right in the end. Ida rescues her baby sister and they return safely to the mother who's waiting, with the promise of the father's return from sea.

The illustrations are haunting and beautiful. The babies are my favorites.  I love the attention  given to the hands and feet of the characters. Gorgeous.

There are layers of things going on in each painting, matching the tone of the story perfectly. Even the font used for the text is an elegant, calligraphy style.

Thank you Mr. Sendak for your amazing contribution to the world of children's literature.

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