May 9th, 2007

Veronica Mars, Kristen Bell, knowing

Interview: Sarah Miller

They say that one good turn deserves another. In Sarah Miller's case, one good story inspired another. Miss Spitfire: Reaching Helen Keller, her debut novel, retells the true story of one of America's most beloved teacher-student relationships: that of Annie Sullivan and Helen Keller. ( Read my book review. )

With Sarah's background in bookselling and fascination with communication, this story suits her well, and her compassion for the real people involved comes through in her writing.

Miss Spitfire: Reaching Helen Keller is targeted towards readers in upper elementary and middle school. How old were you when you first heard about Helen Keller and Annie Sullivan?

I think I must have been in first grade the first time I heard about Helen Keller. I have a pretty clear memory of Mrs. Sanborn trying to help us understand what it's like to think without words. I was sure I could do it, and I remember trying to picture a bicycle without actually saying or seeing the word "bicycle" in my head. It's not easy. I also remember that we got to poke Braille messages into the back of styrofoam meat trays in class.

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Now it's time for trivia!

10 Things You Probably Don't Know about Annie Sullivan and Helen Keller by Sarah Miller

10. The illness that cost Helen Keller her sight and hearing has never been identified. Doctors today believe it may have been scarlet fever or meningitis.

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Visit Sarah Miller's official website -

View my review of Miss Spitfire.

Read Chapter One of Miss Spitfire.

Also visit her blog, AmazonConnect profile, and MySpace page.