Where The Wild Things Are is an illustrated narrative about a child named Max. One evening, Max gets into his wolf costume and sets about making endless mischief. As a punishment for his pranks, his mother sends him off to bed without supper.
As the night progresses, a forest is born out of Max’s imagination. Pretty soon, he is sailing off to the fictional land of some fierce-looking monsters called Wild Things. But Max ends up being the fiercest of them all, and manages to tame them. This is the feat for which he is crowned the king of the Wild Things.
Max and the other monsters then dance away their time in a wild rumpus. After a long time, Max sends the monsters to bed. Eventually, he starts feeling homesick and lonely, and decides that home, where he is loved most, is the best place after all. He then sails back home to a piping hot supper.
According to the author, the book explores the theme of how children learn to master feelings like anger, fear, boredom, frustration, jealousy, and danger, to eventually get a hold on the realities of their lives.
Where The Wild Things Are was first published in 1963 by Harper Row. It garnered the increasing interest of children. The book has received high critical acclaim. It was awarded the Caldecott medal in 1964. It has been adapted for several media, including film and opera. It has also been adapted for an animated short film.