Annie and the Old One

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Annie and the Old One
AuthorMiska Miles
IllustratorPeter Parnall
CountryUnited States
GenreChildren's Literature , Fiction

Annie and the Old One is an American children's fictional book, written by Miska Miles. It was first published in 1971, illustrated by Peter Parnall. In 1972 the book received the Newbery Medal Honor Book award. The novel uses Native American culture to explore themes of family death, dealing with grief, and the family relationships.[1]


A young Native American girl, Annie, is willing to do anything to stop her mother from finishing a rug after hearing from her grandmother that she will die when the rug is finished. Annie misbehaves in school to make her parents come speak to the teacher, but the teacher does not call for her mother. Then, Annie let the sheep escape, so her mother and father would spend the morning chasing after the sheep. Her last attempt to distract her mother from finishing the rug is pulling out the strands of yarn, one by one .


  • Annie --A young girl who is willing to stop her mother from finishing the rug.
  • GrandMother-- Annie's grandmother, who is soon about to pass away.
  • Mother--Annie's mother
  • Father--Annie's father

Teaching and themes[edit]

The novel focuses on dealing with death, the grief that comes with family death, and family relationships.[1] Teaching resources recommend using the book to teach elementary children how to deal with grief and managing feelings.[2]


Publisher's Weekly described the book effectively dealing with "a difficult challenge'' for children and that the illustrations ``reflect the dignity of the text.''[3]


  1. ^ a b Cecil, Nancy Lee; Roberts, Patricia (1998-01-01). Families in Children's Literature: A Resource Guide, Grades 4-8. Libraries Unlimited. ISBN 9781563083136.
  2. ^ "Caring Pillar:Native American Value of Wisdom". We are All Relatives! Book 2 (PDF). South Dakota State University. pp. 50–52.
  3. ^ "Children's Book Review: Annie and the Old One by Miska Miles, Author, Patricia Miles Martin, Author, Peter Parnall, Illustrator Little, Brown Books for Young Readers $7.99 (44p) ISBN 978-0-316-57120-3". Retrieved 2015-11-26.