If you’re interested in receiving a review copy of Dear Anais: My Life in Poems for You or Regina’s Closet: Finding My Grandmother’s Secret Journal by Diana Raab please send inquires to diana [at] dianaraab [dot] com. This author screens all requests.
This memoir is based on the story of author Diana Raab discovering her grandmother’s secret journal more than three decades after she took her life in Diana’s childhood home. Regina, Diana’s glamorous and spirited grandmother, loved and cared for her until Diana was ten.
Reading the diary, Diana learns all about her grandmother’s life–her early years in Poland during World War I, being orphaned at the age of twelve, and her subsequent immigrations to Vienna, Paris and The United States, all prior to World War II. The evolution of Regina’s Closet and Raab’s journey into her grandmother’s past, was prompted by Raab’s own personal battles. She hoped that the journal would provide answers and solace, and a reconnection with her grandmother. Throughout the book Raab’s reflections are interspersed with Regina’s journal excerpts.
Regina’s Closet also includes information gathered from various other references and historical documents relating to certain events and locales, photographs and maps, all of which provide a complete picture of Regina’s place and time.
“Diana M. Raab’s Dear Anaïs: My Life in Poems for You is not only a tribute to the late diarist, but also a tribute to diaries themselves. Each of the book’s poems, culled from Raab’s own journal, offers intimate portraitures, tiny memoirs in verse. Raab’s poetry is seductive in its earnestness, appealing in its vulnerability, mystery, and enchantment.”
– Denise Duhamel, poet, author of Two and Two and Queen for a Day: Selected and New Poems
“Raab’s skill is as a poet, but her passages are as intimate as a diary. She reconstructs her past mirroring Nin’s emotional honesty. The reader never feels voyeuristic reading the intimate passages, but feels like a confidant, friend and maybe even a lover.”
– Steve Reigns, Nin scholar, poet, and editor of My Life is Poetry
“In Diana Raab’s ‘imaginary world.people drip with stories / and linger in bookstores and cafés / slurping foamy cappuccinos / and nibbling chocolate cake.’ And the poems in Dear Anaïs are, indeed, rife with both stories and the extravagantly various things of this world: Laundromats and writers’ conferences, steel-tipped boots and champagne, patched jeans and paramedics, blueberries and autographed photos of Paul Newman. While the book does pay homage to Anaïs Nin-to her eroticism and wry humor and exquisite journals-it also vividly evoke’s Raab’s own life, particularly her family memories. Like Nin, Raab is indefatigable in her desire to commit one woman’s life to paper.”
– David Starkey, author of Ways of Being Dead