Praise for Regina’s Closet:

“The book is remarkable for its large sweep of history as well as for the intimate details of everyday life, of which the journal itself—’a plastic sheath filled with papers’—is the most poignant.”

~ Kyoko Mori, author of The Dream of Water: A Memoir and Polite Lies


“Raab makes Regina’s Closet a walk-in book, complete with recovered documents and packed with the sumptuous, minute, domestic, tormented and romantic details of one fully-lived life and another plucky life lived in answer to it.”

~ Molly Peacock, author of Paradise: Piece by Piece: A Memoir


“There is an ancient adage, which to paraphrase, states that if people wish to see their own lives in perspective, they must first search for their reflections in the souls of their ancestors. This same adage portrays the journey of discovery as emotionally arduous, spiritually painful and often dangerous. Diana Raab’s marvelous journal has liberated the voice of her remarkable grandmother with insight, compassion and considerable skill. Acknowledging the price paid for the truth, I applaud her courage as well as her literary talents.”

~ Thomas Steinbeck, author and son of American literary forefather, John Steinbeck


“Powerful, fascinating, and deeply moving . . . Regina’s story of a determined little girl fighting for her family’s survival in Europe during World War I opens a window onto a time in history that few people alive remember, but everyone should know about . . . Utterly riveting.”

~ Rachel Simon, author of Riding the Bus With My Sister


“Regina’s Closet is a compelling memoir of war, diasporas, survival, and love. Diana Raab has painstakingly researched her grandmother’s life and in these pages pays homage to an incredible woman who recorded in her journals the horror of war and the difficult but ascendant work of survival. When Diana is diagnosed with breast cancer, she turns to her grandmother’s journals and discovers the inspiration and strength she’ll need in order to survive this devastating disease. Regina’s Closet is a transcendent tale about the power of words and the indestructible wisdom of love.”

~ Connie May Fowler, author of Before Women Had Wings and The Problem with Murmur Lee


“Regina’s Closet is a raw and moving account of the life of Regina Klein, Raab’s maternal grandmother, set against the backdrop of widespread violence in Europe in the early 1900s. The book is at once a compelling portrait of complex legacies passed down from mothers to daughters (and then to granddaughters) — as well as a testament to how our lives are inexorably shaped by the choices and circumstances of those who came before us. This is a brave, important, and well-written book.”

~ Paula Goldman, Founder/Director, Imagining Ourselves, International Museum of Women


“Intensely interesting, Diana Raab’s transcript of her grandmother’s diary portrays the immense sadness and difficulty—and bravery and determination—of a life in Europe under occupation. Raab’s commentary provides useful information and chronology but also reveals her deep love for, and sense of connection with, her grandmother. Two memoirs in one then, and both of them achingly poignant, generously precise.”

~ Kelly Cherry, author of The Exiled Heart


“Regina’s Closet offers a powerful window into the lingering effects of human atrocity. Through her grandmother’s secret journal, Diana Raab discovers how both pain and resilience can be passed down through generations, and how sharing our stories can become a profound act of healing.”

~ Gayle Brandeis, author of Fruitflesh: Seeds of Inspiration for Women Who Write


“Thank you, Diana, for giving a face to the little girl I sent the contents of my ‘piggy bank’ some ninety years ago. Your book, Regina’s Closet touched me deeply.”

~ Mireille Marokvia, author of Sins of the Innocent


“What is contained in the pages of this journal is literally a whirlwind. In this day when remarkable stories of fathers, mothers, brothers, sons and daughters appear in print with increasing regularity, a reader might be justified in appearing skeptical when I say Regina’s story is remarkable. But it is. Diana has shaped this powerful raw material into a form that we can now simply call—art.”

~ Richard Goodman, author of French Dirt


“Finding her grandmother after her suicide became the central event of Diana’s childhood, and that’s why finding her grandmother’s journal years later may have been the central saving event of Diana in her own complex life as an adult. A strong, serious true story of women surviving.”

~ Philip F. Deaver, author of Silent Retreats, winner of the Flannery O’Connor Award for Short Fiction


“Wow! What an incredible story. It’s rare for me to “rave” or to liter my opinions with complimentary adjectives and yet, I have been exposed to a book that absolutely demands both . . . Regina’s Closet: Finding My Grandmother’s Secret Journal is hauntingly beautiful and filled with the kind of raw emotion that reaches out from the pages and touches the reader in a very tangible way. Don’t miss this heart warming, inspiring and life-affirming book– this is one you will want to share with everyone!”

~ RJ McGill

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