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The Wild Things by Dave Eggers

The Wild Things (2009)

by Dave Eggers (Author)

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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English (33)  Dutch (2)  All languages (35)
Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
This is a powerful book that will really open your eyes to the injustices that goes on in this country - OUR Country, that we never hear about or get swept under the rug. I am glad that Zeitoun got to share his story, it's unconscionable that such things are allowed to go on here in the US. It's maddening. ( )
  KatDes | Nov 20, 2015 |
My library had this in adult fiction. Imo, it is not. The resonances, metaphors, and themes are accessible to children and other naive readers. They are not complex enough to engage me. Plus it's awfully short. The only thing I want to do now is reread, for the hundredth time, the original. I don't feel a need to think about this anymore, nor do I have interest in the movie. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Apr 14, 2015 |
Overall, I really enjoyed The Wild Things by Dave Eggers. I was looking for something different than the fantasy books I normally read. This was definitely one of those books. From the beginning, it was funny, entertaining, and interesting. Then, when you are introduced to the monsters it also becomes a little creepy and crazy.

Max is a wild 8 year old boy who really just wants someone to play with. He really wants to play with his sister, but she is getting older and wants nothing to do with her little brother. His mother has a new boyfriend, so she has less time to spend with Max. He can’t seem to control anything in his life and just doesn’t understand a lot of what is going on around him. Most of the story is his escape from his world and into one that he has control over.

Eggers’s book focuses a lot more on the characters in the story. He really adds more to them than what you watch in the movie. Each creature has its own personality and they are extremely dysfunctional in the book. They go from from being happy and having fun to becoming very angry and wanting to eat everything in a split second. They are also very scary for this reason. Some have very strange habits as well, which is actually funny, but I don’t want to give anything away if you haven’t read this book yet.

The story is well paced, easy to read, hilarious, and just plain crazy.

This book is basically a full length version of the picture book and adds more to the movie. If you have enjoyed these, then you will enjoy this book too. I only recommend this book to young adults and adults as it would probably be to scary and violent for younger children. ( )
  AshleyMiller | Sep 10, 2014 |
It probably doesn’t happen very often. A novel, based on a beloved children’s picture book as modulated by the screenplay for an indie film, commissioned by said beloved children’s book author, the novelist to be none other than the enfant terrible novelist and publisher, Dave Eggers. Actually, it sounds rather the plot of a Spike Jonze film.

Eggers does yeoman work with this adaptation (he co-wrote the screenplay for the film as well). His short declarative sentences match the performative bursts of his young protagonist. In the first third of the novel especially, when Max is at home with his sister, Claire, their mother and her boyfriend, Gary, the frustration and anger boiling beneath the surface is palpable, erupting periodically and detrimentally for Max and everyone else. Here Eggers does indeed get inside his protagonist, not unlike the wolf suit that Max will later don. The action and the anger and the irreconcilable muddle of their lives is thoroughly believable.

Where the novel starts to go astray is precisely where the Sendak picture book takes off. Max, now in his wolf suit, runs away from home. There is an awkward transition as Eggers sails him to the unknown isle of the wild things. And then Max is forced to confront a host of monsters in the strange setting in which he is declared to be the king. Children, I understand, are completely entranced by this part of Sendak’s story. Here, not so much. Eggers seems to be labouring, the actions and emotions of the monsters as lumbering and outsized as they are themselves. Whereas in the first third of the novel, the reader feels like anything could happen with the vivid characters that have been presented, here everything feels like stagecraft blocking for a thumping good moral that must surely be just around the corner. That deflates the tension and the narrative drive and eventually the interest of the reader.

Since this rendering of Maurice Sendak’s classic comes across as an exercise, I couldn’t help wondering what would have arisen if it had been commissioned from other writers, perhaps Daniel Handler, or Magnus Mills, or George Saunders, or whomever you like. Perhaps it could be an iterative series. Now that would be something worth reading. ( )
  RandyMetcalfe | Mar 24, 2014 |
I actually really don't like Dave Eggers - I found his "A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius" boastful and boring. But a friend of mine lent me this book, and I do like both the original book and the movie, so I thought I'd give it a shot. And, yeah, it was okay. It does a good job of combining the original and the movie, letting you get into Max's head. It's clear that Eggers is still part child (not really a compliment, but it does work for him here). I dunno - if you liked the original and movie and Eggers doesn't drive you totally mad, may as well. ( )
  AmberTheHuman | Aug 30, 2013 |
Showing 1-5 of 33 (next | show all)
Het grote probleem van dit boek is tweeslachtigheid. Dat manifesteert zich al in de titel: zo'n half–Nederlandse, half–Engelse en half tussen haakjes gestelde titel doet vreemd aan. Ook de inhoud heeft de air van besluiteloosheid: is dit een roman of een kinderboek? Niemand die het weet. De metaforiek – monsters die allerlei minder prettige menselijke eigenschappen in zich herbergen – is die van een volwassen roman, de ongeloofwaardige opbouw van het verhaal doet aan een belegen kinderboek denken.

In feite is Max (en de Wild Things) een moderne versie van Godfried Bomans' klassieker Erik of het klein insectenboek, vol dieren met menselijke trekjes, een intelligent jongetje dat hen iets bij tracht te brengen en een onduidelijke mengvorm tussen kinderboek en roman voor volwassenen. Maar waar Bomans' boek een afgerond verhaal is, vol van humor, daar is Max (en de Wild Things) vooral leuk voor zover het zich afspeelt in de gewone mensenwereld.
De hype rond Eggers mag dan verdiend zijn, niet alles wat hij aanraakt verandert in goud. Zelfs niet in januari.
added by PGCM | edit8weekly site, Frank Heinen (Feb 10, 2010)
There are seven Wild Things all told, and getting to know them all within a 2-hour film is made easy by the fact that they are so broadly drawn. They have the lively, well-traveled banter of a family, making fun of each other’s quirks and accommodating them at the same time. It helps a lot that they’re cute. But they crowd the story in Eggers’ novel. Their family bickering, which is quick and witty in the film, makes for pages of dialogue in the novel, during which I frequently lost track and who was who. Max’s personal journey starts out as a basic hero’s quest from home to unknown, at which point it breaks down into seven different quests as Max works out his personal issues with each of the Wild Things. If this sounds like pop-psych jargon, it’s because that’s what the weakest parts of the novel remind you of.
My resistance began from the very first sentence. Max is chasing his little white dog down the stairs. In Where The Wild Things Are, the dog is a nameless, terrier-shaped blob rushing anxiously out of frame. In The Wild Things, he's called "Stumpy". Worse than just the name – it's obviously wrong, isn't it? – is that something ethereal and elusive has become so distressingly concrete.
added by PGCM | editThe Guardian, Patrick Ness (Oct 24, 2009)

» Add other authors (4 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Eggers, DaveAuthorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Graham, DionNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Sumpter, RachelDesignersecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For Maurice Sendak, an unspeakably brave and beautiful man
First words
Matching Stumpy pant for pant, Max chased his cloud-white dog through the upstairs hallway, down the wooden stairs, and into the cold open foyer.
'I made a surprise for you. Your first royal meal.'

Max could smell something put under his nose. His body shook involuntarily. It was the most potent and wretched smell he had ever encountered. It was like a thousand long-dead fish soaked in gasoline and eggs.
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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During a fight at home, young Max flees and runs away into the woods. He finds a boat there, jumps in, and ends up on the open sea, destination unknown. He lands on the island of the Wild Things, and soon he becomes their king. But things get complicated when Max realizes that the Wild Things want as much from him as he wants from them. Based loosely on the storybook by Maurice Sendak and the screenplay co-written with Spike Jonze.… (more)

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3 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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An edition of this book was published by Penguin Australia.

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