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Maurice Sendak, the famed children's book author and artist best known for Where the Wild Things Are, died Tuesday at the age of 83.
The New York Times obit says it best: "Maurice Sendak ... wrenched the picture book out of the safe, sanitized world of the nursery and plunged it into the dark, terrifying and hauntingly beautiful recesses of the human psyche. ... Roundly praised, intermittently censored and occasionally eaten, Mr. Sendak’s books were essential ingredients of childhood for the generation born after 1960 or thereabouts, and in turn for their children."
In addition to Where the Wild Things Are, which was published by Harper & Row in 1963, Sendak's list of children's classics include a dozen or so others, including In the Night Kitchen and Outside Over There (which along with Wild Things formed a trilogy), Higglety Pigglety Pop! and The Nutshell Library.
Sendak died as a result of complications from a recent stroke, according to his longtime editor.