Maurice Sendak, the author of the beloved children's tale Where the Wild Things Are, has died at the age of 83.
Sendak published the classic children's book, which he had lovingly and beautifully illustrated, in 1963. The book was an immediate bestseller and won international acclaim, and was awarded the prestigious Caldecott Medal, considered the Pulitzer Prize of children’s book illustration. Sendak was primarily a self-taught artist and illustrator. Comparisons to other popular children's book authors of the time, such as Dr. Seuss and Shel Silverstein, were inevitable, but Sendak preferred to remain largely out of the limelight.
Where the Wild Things Are would go on to become one of the bestselling children's books of all time, selling over 19 million copies and has been translated into countless languages around the world. A film adaptation directed by Spike Jonez was released in 2009.
His last book was The Bumble-Ardy, released last October, and was the first new book written and illustrated by Sendak in over thirty years. A posthumous picture book, My Brother's Book— a poem written and illustrated by Sendak and inspired by his love for his late brother, Jack — is scheduled to be published in February, 2013.
Sendak passed away near his home in Danbury, Connecticut, of complications from a recent stroke.