Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

We’ve had this book sitting on a shelf in Monkeys bedroom for a while – hubby bought it as it was one of his favourite books as a child – I was never that convinced that Monkey would like it but recently it has made an appearance with the many books Monkey brings from his bedroom and dumps in the living room – “reading” through them (looking at the pictures mainly) and asking for stories to be read at random times of the day!

The story first published in 1963 (in the USA) and first published in the UK in 1967. The book won the Caldecott Medal for the Most Distinguished Picture Book of 1964.

The story is about a boy called Max who likes dressing up in his wolf outfit getting into mischief – so much so that his mum called him “wild thing” and he naughtily answered his mum back saying “I’ll eat you up” and so he was sent to his room without his food.  This begins a change in Max’s bedroom – during the night a forest grows, and an ocean with a boat takes Max to where the wild things are, he tames the wild things with a magic trick and they make him the king of all the wild things and they have a party until Max says stop and he sends them to bed as his mum did to him without any supper.  The story continues “Max the king of all wild things was lonely and wanted to be where someone loved him best of all” (home) so he sets off back in his boat and returns to his bedroom “where he found his supper waiting for him”.

Monkey isn’t too sure of the story however he does like the pictures (which are illustrated by the author Maurice Sendak) the picture of the wild things are really good and there’s a lot of detail in the pictures – so much so that I hadn’t realised until reviewing this book that the boat Max has actually has his name written on the side of the boat and there’s a picture at his home at the start of the story which was drawn by Max (it has his name on it) and it looks similar to the wild things.

For me the story is actually quite good, I like the idea that his mum although cross with him has gone to his room and put out his food she’d told him he wouldn’t be getting and that while she was there he was fast asleep having a dream about the wild things and it was the smell of his food that woke him up!

Monkey gives the story a 5/10 I would give it 8/10 although as previously said the illustrations are very detailed and this is why the book is often picked up by Monkey as he’s fascinated by the pictures of the wild things.

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