Title Image

“Words bridge the gaps between two minds.


Words are a miracle.”

Annie Sullivan was little more than a half-blind orphan with a fiery tongue when she arrived at Ivy Green in 1887. Desperate for work, she’d taken on a seemingly impossible job — teaching a child who was deaf, blind, and as ferocious as any wild animal. But Helen Keller needed more than a teacher. She needed someone daring enough to work a miracle. And if anyone was a match for Helen, it was the girl they used to call Miss Spitfire.

For Annie, reaching Helen’s mind meant losing teeth as raging fists flew. It meant standing up when everyone else had given up. It meant shedding tears at the frustrations and at the triumphs. By telling this inspiring story from Annie Sullivan’s point of view, Sarah Miller’s debut novel brings an amazing figure to sharp new life. Annie’s past, her brazen determination, and her connection to the girl who would call her Teacher have never been clearer.

Helen Keller with Anne Sullivan in July 1888
Helen Keller with Anne Sullivan, July 1888


Alabama Children’s Choice Book Award Nominee

ALA/YALSA Best Book for Young Adults

ALSC Notable Children's Recording

Book Links Lasting Connections of 2007 Title

Booklist Editors’ Choice

Booklist Top 10 First Novels for Youth

Booklist Top 10 First Novels for Youth on Audio 2010

Booklist Top 10 Historical Fiction for Youth

CCBC Choices 2008 selection

Cybils Award Middle Grade Finalist

Great Lakes Book Award Finalist

Jefferson Cup Honor Book

Prairie Pasque Book Award Nominee

Readergirlz featured title for December 2007

South Carolina Junior Book Award Nominee

Virginia Reader’s Choice Award Nominee

William Allen White Children's Book Award Nominee




January 2013
Cotsen Children’s Library

Dana Sheridan at The Bibliofiles, Cotsen Children’s Library, Princeton University


February 2008
Look Books

With Felicity

Novel Rocket

With Noel DeVries

November 2007
Becky’s Book Reviews

With Becky

October 2007
Embracing the Child

With the Embracing the Child Team

September 2007
Deaf Characters in Adolescent Literature

With Sharon Pajka

July 2007
Write, Run, Repeat

With Laura Bowers

June 2007
Miss Erin

With Erin McIntosh

May 2007

With Little Willow


Miles Traveled


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Braille Grades Mastered


Out-of-Print Books Collected