Associated Press – “Maurice Sendak, the children’s book author and illustrator who saw the sometimes-dark side of childhood in books like Where the Wild Things Are and In the Night Kitchen, has died. He was 83. Longtime friend and caretaker Lynn Caponera says she was with him when he died early Tuesday at a hospital in Danbury, Conn. She says he had a stroke on Friday.”
AP – “Maurice Sendak’s eyes harden and his off-center smile curls as he considers the idea of writing a memoir. “I didn’t sleep with famous people or movie stars or anything like that. It’s a common story: Brooklyn boy grows up and succeeds in his profession, period,” he explains in his friendly growl. “I hate memoirs. I hate them. What you have is your private life. Why make it public? And how different is it from anybody else’s life? People want to read things like, ‘Did you have an affair with Oprah Winfrey, really and truly?'” The world cares about the 83-year-old Sendak, whether he likes it or not. He’s a dark soul who has been canonized, a hero who never asked for the job. With a sigh, and a wink, he confides that bookstores still contact him for appearances and children still call out and ask if he’s the guy who wrote “Where the Wild Things Are.” He even has an “in” at the White House; President Barack Obama read “Where the Wild Things Are” for the 2009 Easter Egg Roll.
NYT Opinionator – “Some readers like to see portraits of authors they admire, study their personal histories or hear them read aloud. I like to know whether an author can spell. Nabokov spelled beautifully. Fitzgerald was crummy at spelling, bedeviled by entry-level traps like “definate.” Bad spellers, of course, can be sublime writers and good spellers punctilious duds. But it’s still intriguing that Fitzgerald, for all his gifts, didn’t perceive the word “finite” in definite, the way good spellers automatically do. Did this oversight color his impression of infinity? Infinaty?”
Giga Om – “Every week, it seems there is more evidence that the balance of power in the book industry continues to tilt towards the author and away from the all-powerful publisher. One of the latest examples is John Green, who writes fiction for young adults from his home in Indianapolis, and whose latest novel has hit number one before it has even been published. Green gives credit for this phenomenon to his Twitter and YouTube followers, but the real credit should go to him for being willing to not just use social media as a promotional tool the way some do, but to actually reach out and engage with his readers and fans.”
AP – “Spy novelist John le Carre said Thursday he is giving an archive of his books, personal papers and photographs to Oxford University’s renowned Bodleian Library. The archive includes drafts and manuscripts of le Carre’s best known novels, including “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” “The Tailor of Panama” and “The Constant Gardener.”