1. McPherson's Lament: About Maurice Sendak →


    In the spring of 1981, when I was on the staff of The Washington Post, I had several long conversations in New York and Connecticut with Maurice Sendak…. Maurice was a delightful and complex man, funny as well as dark (and darkly funny). Like an elusive butterfly, he was not easily pinned for display.  I realized I had nothing to add to what I had already written, so I am posting the profile that appeared in slightly different form on the cover of The Washington Post’s Book World section on May 10, 1981

    William McPherson’s Testing the Current, with an introduction by D.T. Max, is forthcoming from NYRB Classics.

  2. It’s been a sad beginning to Children’s Book Week with the death this morning of Maurice Sendak. And we also just learnt that Palmer Brown, whose children’s books we’ve been bringing back into print over the  past year and with more coming, died as well in late April. Despite the sad tidings we do still want to celebrate the wonderful children’s books being published now and in the past; and also share a bit of Brown’s work, the images above are from the upcoming Cheerful, and the excerpt below from the recently published The Silver Nutmeg, companion book to the popular Beyond the Pawpaw Trees.

         The unfinished break in the garden wall was part of her father’s new plan to broaden the horizon for her. ‘It’s shameful,’ he had said to her mother one day, ‘for Anna Lavinia to be cooped up. How can you expect the girl to grow up with a point of view, if she has none?’
         Anna Lavinia secretly felt that she had points of view on many things, but she had been thrilled with her father’s decision to help her find a new one. For a whole week she and her father had tramped around the outside of the rosy brick wall, figuring out just the right place to open it.