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The Miracle Worker

4.2  ·  Rating Details ·  27,855 Ratings  ·  290 Reviews

Twelve-year-old Helen Keller lived in a prison of silence and darkness. Born deaf, blind, and mute, with no way to express herself or comprehend those around her, she flew into primal rages against anyone who tried to help her, fighting tooth and nail with a strength born of furious, unknowing desperation.

Then Annie Sullivan came. Half-blind herself,
Paperback, 128 pages
Published June 25th 2002 by Pocket Books (first published 1956)
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Community Reviews

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Jun 09, 2016 Deanna rated it it was amazing
"No One Could Reach Her"

I went to this play and read this book when I was in grade 4. It had a huge impact on me. It was all I could talk about for weeks. I wanted to go see it again and again. It will always be one of my favorite plays. Another friend just posted a review of Helen Keller's autobiography and I look forward to reading that one too. I would love to see this play with my daughter.

I remember watching as Helen got so upset when she couldn't express herself and fought those who tried
Feb 23, 2016 Sean rated it liked it
This was a fun read but it could be dry and reading it as a script from a play was a little strange for me.
Nov 30, 2008 Meg rated it it was amazing
One of my favorite plays... the story of Anne Sullivan breaking through the darkness and silence of Helen Keller's world to teach her the very concept of language. It reads incredibly well, but if you must see it in action, check out the classic film version with Anne Bancroft and Patty Duke and absolutely DO NOT WATCH THE REMAKE. It is craptacular to the extreme. I just finished a run at the Hale Center Theater in Orem playing Helen Keller's mother Kate and it positively changed my life forever ...more
Jan 11, 2014 Lori rated it really liked it
Shelves: classic, play
I read this years ago. I have always been interested in Helen Keller's life. I find her to be a remarkable lady. "The Miracle Worker" is a play. a well known one that still has productions today. it is about Helen when she is six years old. blind and deaf and acts like a "wild child" Annie Sullivan is hired to teach her. over the month she tries to teach Helen language throughfinger spelling. Helen must also learn manners and to behave in a more acceptable way. a tall order for Annie Sullivan wh ...more
Sep 25, 2008 Patricia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Patricia by: probably a librarian
if annie sullivan and helen keller can do what they did.....well, stop complaining.
My paternal grandmother lived in Kansas City in the early 20th century. The music halls in Kansas City were cheap and accessible in those days, and many widely-known figures would come to play in Kansas City.

Helen Keller was one of those players. My grandmother said that Helen had to have an interpreter present on stage, not only to convey questions to her, but to interpret her spoken words, since Helen never really mastered speaking well enough to be understood by strangers. At the times my gr
This is the story of Helen Keller who was born a healthy little girl, but after falling ill with a childhood ailment she becomes Blind, Deaf and Mute. I found the story very touching, especially as someone who works with children. The Keller family hires Annie Sullivan to come and help teach Helen, and they are surprised to find Annie herself suffered from Blindness and is only 20 years old. Annie had her work cut out for her as Helen had been so spoiled and lacked all forms of discipline as the ...more
May 03, 2016 Madelyn rated it liked it
One thing I would just like to bring up-- this is a play. I was not expecting that. This was a lovely play though. I don't really read a ton of plays because I find them hard to follow, but this one was good. I was actually able to follow and trace the events. But it was a bit difficult in certain times to try to REALLY understand what was going on. It would be cool if they could turn this play into an actual book format (of course keeping the original play).

The play was about Helen Keller when
Feb 21, 2016 Vicki rated it it was amazing
I had read about Helen Keller after she had become an adult in her autobiography. To then read the play called The Miracle Worker gave me a very eye opening view of Helen as a child.

Helen had been a normal child until she developed a fever which left her deaf, mute and blind. She had no one to teach her how to function in a day to day life with her family. She behaved as a spoiled and unruly child. Her table manners were horrible and she was not able to connect with anyone. Her parents reached
Haley *City Girl Appearance~Country Girl Heart*
Well, it's kind of biography and kind of historical but it is SUPER good!! I really liked it!! I recommend this one to everyone!!! A must read!
This play brings back a lot of memories for me. I acted in a production of it in high school. I played a bit part, spoke a single line, and was on stage for one scene. But it was a big thrill to be involved in it, and gave me a love of acting which persists to this day.
I don't know why I'm just getting around to listing this on Good Reads and setting out a mini-review, but alas.

This is my third or fourth go-round with William Gibson's The Miracle Worker. I'll be directing it this fall at my school, and so with any play comes the inevitable multiple-readings; this weekend was my "Design Read," where my focus is redirected from the character, plot, language, and meaning of the show to the practical needs and abstract ideas for a production (where does this tabl
Aug 17, 2010 Clinton rated it it was ok

The Miracle Worker was one of those plays intended to reach out to the readers' hearts. The story is of Helen Keller, one of the most iconic figures throughout the world, and her struggle with Annie Sullivan to gain understanding of the world around her.

It portrays a crude glimpse at what Helen's life, and the life of those around her, had in store. Crafted from historical fiction, The Miracle Worker shows how each relation to Helen was "broken" in some way, and how Helen seemed to be the center

Sep 03, 2016 Ashlyn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-owned
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Christina Singh
Mar 05, 2015 Christina Singh rated it it was amazing
One of the best plays I've ever read. Very emotional and well played out. The scenes were very detailed so it was easy to follow. The story of Hellen Keller and Anne Sullivan is truly amazing and inspirational. Reading this play makes me want to see it performed live more than anything.
Hannah bubana S.713
So I'm performing this play, and one day I just sat down and read this book cover to cover. WOW. It's such an elegant, witty, heart breaking show. So many interesting characters, every word of dialouge spoken in this play has a good reason behind it. One of the best plays ever written, although I haven't read many plays, so don't trust my judgement on the best plays ever. But I'm pretty sure that's what any playwrite would say it was one of the best American plays anyway. It's interesting readin ...more
The Miracle Worker was an interesting book. I can't say I loved it, but I didn't hate it either.

The characters, being based after real people, were interesting and full of personality. Just from reading the dialougue and stage directions, you could get a good glimpse into their life. I felt Annie was portrayed well and was consistant throughout the story.

The plot moved along nicely and I like (view spoiler) I did feel the
Miranda Colvin
Oct 13, 2015 Miranda Colvin rated it it was amazing
Miranda Colvin
Mrs. Kuehl
English 3A
13 October 2015
English Book Love Assessment

The book I read for this assessment was The Miracle Worker by William Gibson. I was interested in the story of Helen Keller when I started learning sign language at school so I decided to read this book about her. When Helen was just over a year old she caught an illness that left her deaf and blind. Her parents tried taking her to special doctors but no one could cure Helen. They Keller’s didn’t know how to help her
I have seen the movie version of this play, and the play wasn't that different. I always find it a little difficult to read plays, but I liked this one. My only problem is that it ends at Helen and Anne at the pump and how Helen learns that words have meaning. I would've liked it to be extended a little bit longer. I'd recommend the movie if you don't like reading plays.
Kate Brown
There is nothing negative I can say about the play, "The Miracle Worker". It is a powerful story about Helen Keller and her teacher, Annie Sullivan. Not surprisingly there is just as many stage directions, as there is dialogue. The actors must not only use words, but also physical blocking to demonstrate the challenges Helen Keller faced. There are plenty of other roles including; Keller, Kate, Aunt Ev, Percey, and Martha. While I think the play is tremendous, it will be a challenge to use as a ...more
Becky Dartnall
Sep 16, 2015 Becky Dartnall rated it it was amazing
Amazing play about the emergence of a young Southern girl, Helen Keller (deaf,dumb, blind and presumed mentally deficient) into the light of communication through sign language. Just as dramatically, it is the emergence of a confident, determined teacher, Annie Sullivan, an orphan who survived the 19th century urban idea of a children's home, finds a way to go to school and studies the plight of the blind and deaf. Hired sight unseen by Helen's parents, she travels from the north to the south, a ...more
Apr 19, 2015 Jeannette rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Apr 19, 2016 Brielle rated it really liked it
AMAZING ending!! A miracle really did happen!
Sean Meade
I think it would be hard in this day and age to find three adults who could agree to actual discipline like Annie, Kate and the Captain basically had to in this story (and presumably in real life) to ultimately free Helen from her 'cage'.
Mary Kate
I feel wary of giving this three stars, because usually three stars meant that there was something I disliked about the book. There was nothing I really disliked about this book. It just wasn't anything special. It felt shallow to me, though pleasant. Annie was delightfully spunky. Kate and Keller were clearly loving parents and good people. There were a few very interesting comparisons made in this book (Annie is likened to a Civil War General, especially). But on the whole, it was rather ordin ...more
Jul 17, 2015 J.M. rated it it was amazing
Shelves: drama, borrowed
Basically flawless. Touching drama-- pun intended-- with a profound message about the power of language. I admit I got a little choked up at the end.

If you haven't seen or read this yet... what are you waiting for?
Mar 25, 2016 Kenneth rated it it was amazing
To me, the most striking remark in the play was when Annie Sullivan, Helen's teacher, states: "The more I think the more certain I am that obedience is the gateway through which knowledge enters the mind of the child." What a different way of looking at education. Now days, discipline has practically been thrown out the window and some teachers half way live in fear of their students. The result is just the same behavior Annie is finding with Helen, profound stubbornness, lack of caring, no resp ...more
Sep 09, 2007 Tessa rated it liked it
this book was..... pretty good. but not the gratest. You definetly got the story though of Helen Keller. The book is writen as a play but has some real charecter.
Aug 30, 2015 Mia rated it it was amazing
I would recommend The Miracle Worker, as it is a wonderfully written play. My favorite part about the script is William Gibson's use of comedy. Because the story of Helen Keller is so serious, it is difficult to appropriately use humor. This was done primarily through supporting characters such as Vinney, the servant, and James, Helens stepbrother and son of Captain Keller. A lot of the comedy takes place at the dinner table. Supper is a common setting focus of the show that is used to show the ...more
Oct 04, 2010 Teya rated it it was amazing
I liked it more than I expected. We had to read it for school, but I ended up reading ahead of my class to finish over the weekend.
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Around the Year i...: The Miracle Worker, by William Gibson 1 10 Sep 18, 2016 07:29PM  
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

William Gibson was a Tony Award-winning American playwright and novelist. He graduated from the City College of New York in 1938.

Gibson's most famous play is The Miracle Worker (1959), the story of Helen Keller's childhood education, which won him the Tony Award for Best Pla
More about William Gibson...

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“At another time she asked,'what is a soul?'
' No one knows,'I replied; 'but we know it is not the body, and it is that part of us which thinks and loves and hopes'...[and] is invisible...'But if I write what my soul thinks,'she said, 'then it will be visible, and the words will be its body.”
“She's right, Kate's right, I'm right and you're wrong. If you drive her away from here it will be over my dead— chair, has it never occurred to you at on one occasion you might be consummately wrong?” 2 likes
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