Book Review: Listening to Africa by: Diana M. Raab

Rating: 5/5

Publisher: Antrim House

Publish Date: March 18, 2012

Origins: From Publisher for Review

Format: Trade Paperback

Order From:  Amazon / Barnes & Noble / Antrim House

Synopsis: Poet Diana M. Raab travels to the heart of Africa with her family to experience the beauty and fascination of another world. During her safari, she observes the distress, the delight, and the dignity of the humans and animals who live there and parallels them with her own quest for health.

Review: Listening to Africa is a book of poems which comes from the heart and opens your eyes to the ferocity and gentleness of life. It’s a gift to be able to express such complex emotions in such an elegant, yet straightforward manner. It’s eye-opening to read about people who are so happy even though, by American standards, they have nothing. Listening to Africa includes some photos from Ms. Raab’s journey through Africa, which are a beautiful addition to the lush words. While life, love, loss, and faith are at the center of her words, Ms. Raab has also breathed in to being the sights and sounds of Africa. Taking to heart the lesson to enjoy each moment, love deeper, and to truly appreciate all we have, Listening to Africa is a powerful book which will touch your soul. 

Diana Raab's Bio: Diana M. Raab is a memoirist, essayist and poet. She has a B.S. in Health Administration and Journalism, and an RN degree from Vanier College in Montreal, in addition to an MFA in Nonfiction Writing from Spalding University’s Low-Residency Program.

Diana has been writing from an early age. As a child of two working parents, she spent a lot of time crafting letters and keeping a daily journal. A journaling advocate and educator, Diana teaches creative journaling and memoir in workshops around the country. She frequently speaks and writes about the healing powers of writing.

She’s the award-winning author of eight books, and the author of over 500 articles and poems. Her release is Writers on the Edge: 22 Writers Speak About Addiction and Depression, co-edited with James Brown, which is a compilation of essays by renowned writers discussing how addiction has influenced their literary lives. She is also editor of Writers and Their Notebooks, a collection of essays written by well-known writers who keep journals.

Raab is the author of two memoirs, Regina's Closet: Finding My Grandmother's Secret Journal, winner of the 2008 National Indie Excellence Award for Memoir and Healing With Words, the 2011 Mom's Choice Award Winner for Adult Nonfiction.

She is also a registered nurse who teaches in the UCLA Extension Writers' Program and at various writing workshops across the country. She is the author of four poetry collections, My Muse Undresses Me (2007); Dear Anais: My Life in Poems for You (2008), winner of The Reader Views Award and an Allbooks Review Editor's Choice Award; The Guilt Gene (2009); and Listening to Africa (2012).

Her poetry and prose have appeared in national journals and anthologies such as Rattle, Rosebud, Litchfield Review, Tonopah Review, Writers' Journal, A Cafe in Space, the Toronto Quarterly, Common Ground Review, The Smoking Poet, Snail Mail Review, New Mirage Journal, Lucidity, Blood and Thunder, Jet Fuel Review, Ascent, and The Huffington Post.


  1. Star, thank you so much for the 5 out of 5 review. I'm so glad you enjoyed Diana's book of poetry.

    1. You're welcome, Nicole! Thank you for sharing it with me!


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