Customer Reviews: The Wild Things
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars46
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on August 4, 2010
Remember "Where the Wild Things Are" by Maurice Sendak? A boy runs from home and hangs out with gigantic beasts. Dave Eggers took this children's book and turned it first into a movie of the same title and then into a novel called "The Wild Things". It goes into more detail about Max-- he has a teenage sister and a single mother who's dating a very lame man and he's trying to cope with the ups and downs of boyhood.

It's such a quick read. Almost 300 pages, but in going along with Max on his adventure, the reader is carried along by his exuberance and over-excitement. The beasts truly are wild and definitely not the brightest bulbs in the box. But each one of them has their own personality, which brings a sort of reality to them, as if they could exist. Maybe they do...

It's been so long since I've read the picture book by Mr. Sendak that I don't remember the reason why Max ran away in that book, or if he even did (was it a dream?), but it was creative of Mr. Eggers to place him in a stressful, confusing family situation, with a sister with whom he used to be close but is now embarrassed by him and a mother who doesn't have time to pay attention to him because of her job and her new boyfriend. These dynamics give the story a definite foundation and the events logically build to Max sailing away in a small boat.

This new spin on a classic children's book is vivid, lively, and full of adventure. You don't even need to read Mr. Sendak's version in order to get enthralled with this one. It's a very enjoyable read for all ages.
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on November 8, 2011
This book is certainly worth paying for. It's very interesting, I haven't found a part yet where it's boring. Throughout the book, I didn't want to stop reading because I wanted to know what would happen next, after that, and what would the outcome be of the situations. Max, the main character, has an elusive way of expressing how he feels and eventually runs off because he feels as though no one understands him. As he runs into the forest, he lets his imagination take place.
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VINE VOICEon December 6, 2009
While this is a well-written book that I enjoyed--with some clever developments that imaginatively build upon Maurice Sendak's original characters--I was so profoundly disappointed by one aspect of Dave Egger's book that I just had to write and address this topic. He left out my favorite scene in the original book! The original book was only 37 pages long and he left out my favorite 8 pages. And they weren't just my favorite pages in the book--this was my very favorite children's book scene of all time! Dave, how could you possibly have left out the incredibly magical scene where Max's bedroom transforms into a moonlit jungle? I was so upset when I discovered that this scene was missing from Egger's book (and the film) that I roared like a Wild Thing. This could have been such a beautiful and enchanted chapter in the book. Boo... Snarl... Hiss...
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on February 7, 2010
Eggers does a valid, believable job at writing in the gaps in the original classic. I don't think Sendak's children's book was missing anything and if there was a perfect book for childhood, Sendak wrote it. This is what made "The Wild Things" even harder to write and for me to accept. But Eggers expands the existing characters and actually instills interesting into each of Max's family and the wild things. This book has more than is in the movie and goes into more detail and complexity than the film allowed for.

All in all, it stands alone as a good book for adults that describes a child's childhood. I find it useful as a parent to remember what it is like to be 8. The fur on the outside of the book is a nice touch and doesn't detract from reading at all. The book opens and lays flat perfectly and the fur is not a gimmick that harms the experience of reading.
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on October 9, 2014

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.
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on May 27, 2010
I love daydreaming, and I love imagining. This book includes both of them. When I read the book, I could feel that my wild part was waking up. You may think that there were some parts were not true in the book, but that's how a real wild world are! I love the part the Carol said that if there were a boring stand before him, he would eat him. Now, my summer beggins, and I really feel boring. I can always remember Carol's idea. Let's eat it!
Come in the daydreaming and imaginary world in "The Wild Tings." Let's be children again. Let's be wild!

Ps. I love the fur, so does my friend. She held MY book for a long time when she saw the fur. Fur-covered Edition is good to be a pillow, too! enjoy!
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on July 19, 2010
Who among us doesn't remember reading "Where the Wild Things Are" as children? Who hasn't roared their terrible roar or gnashed their terrible teeth along with Max? There are so many valuable themes in that book, mainly that as fun as it is to be "wild" it is comforting to be able to come home to people who love you, boundaries and all. Upon hearing that a movie and then a novel was being made from this story, I was excited as there was so much more material to work with than a 37 page picture book conveys.

I read this book without having seen the movie. However, I'm a big Dave Eggers fan so I figured I'd like this book, that it would make me laugh. I have to say I was somewhat disappointed. There were some funny and endearing parts, but all in all the book felt a bit dry and forced. I felt like there were plenty of missed opportunities in this book. I had the feeling that each Wild Thing was supposed to stand for something, some emotion or part of a psyche, but this was never fully explored. And the book ended so abruptly. Part of what kept me reading once Max got to the island was that I wanted to find out what happened once he finally got home, if he had learned from his experience and how he would behave around his family upon his return, and that was basically non-existent. I also got confused with how Max was written. The parts that describe how his brain works in kid-mode were great and very insightful, but then there'd be thought processes of Max's that seemed WAY above his age and much too logical when compared to his earlier thought processes in kid-mode. It also seemed ridiculous how long Max appeared to not only survive, but have boundless energy and lose no cognitive abilities without eating or allowing himself to take off his wolf suit long enough to go to the bathroom.

I knew going into this book that Dave Eggers had been ASKED to write this book to flesh out the movie, and I knew that a project an author was asked to do may not convey the same tone in writing as a project the author has decided on his own to do and worked on passionately. Perhaps it was this different tone that put me off.

All in all, this book left me wanting. There were too many elements that were under-developed or only half explained.
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on October 19, 2009
I really enjoyed reading this book and seeing a part of Max's life. The book brings forth the reasons why Max acts out and the hardships he faces with only being a kid, and feeling like so much more is expected of him.
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on December 7, 2010
This is a fun, quick read. As a mother of two toddlers and a teacher, I loved the tie to the classic children's book, short chapters, and engaging story. Not everything is true to the children's book but it's still great.
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on September 26, 2013
My son literally hugged this book when I gave it to him. Well done on the design. Now as for the book, the wild things is in a word AWESOME
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