Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak. Hardcover book in large gift box with soft toy published by Bodley Head 2001, unpaginated with colour illustrations.
Have you ever wondered where the wild things are? Wonder no more, I have found one and it's here... just the one though... which in the greater scheme of things is probably not that bad an effort, particularly considering that I wasn't looking for anything wild.
The “Wild Thing” i'm referring to, is a small soft toy, that has been packaged up with a hardcover copy of Maurice Sendak's classic tale and placed in a themed gift box. The book is a standard version of the book, but it is a hardcover. The soft toy is modeled on one of the wild things (and it is soft), which Sendak chose not to name... although Spike Jonze, the director of the rather disappointing* screen adaption of the book, did give some of them names. The box... is a box, with some of the original book artwork printed on it and a clear window through to the book and toy. Altogether, it's enough of an eye catcher for this bookseller to take notice.
This is the first time i've seen one of these and looking around on the interwebs, it doesn't seem that any have survived. I mentioned the box to a fellow bookseller the other day and they were as oblivious and excited as I was to its existence. It was obviously meant as a gift pack, to be gifted and then unpacked and more than likely read, hugged (the toy... maybe the book as well) and the box discarded. Which is where this box thing becomes interesting... that is, as much as a box can be interesting. As far as I can see, there seems to be none available on the interwebs at this point in time, making this a very rare piece of Where the Wild Things Are mechandise. It's rare. The book is not rare and the soft toy... is a soft toy.
“And now," cried Max, "let the wild rumpus start!”
* I was disappointed.