Where the Wild Things Are, written and illustrated by Maurice Sendak and published almost 50 years ago (1963), still is a favorite of children everywhere. According to HarperCollins publishers, it has sold more than 19 million copies worldwide as of 2008. The book won the Caldecott Medal for the most distinguished picture book of the year.
The story isn’t all that complicated, which is appropriate for its age group. Young Max puts on a wolf suit, gets into trouble, and gets sent to bed without his supper. Sendak draws monsters that are more likely to tickle than frighten, and his prose breaks rules in a way that kids find hilarious. By the end of the story, Max is ready to go back home, and home is once again ready for him. All is right in his world.
Wild Things has reached a special status now; the children who originally loved it grew up, and got to share it with their children. Now their grandchildren are smitten by it. The book is still in print, and one of the reasons it’s still popular is that its illustrations aren’t dated, those monsters look just as “scary” now as they did when it was first published. Kids still love this book — and their parents still love reading it to them.