Renia Spiegel was born in eastern Poland (modern-day Ukraine) in 1924. In January 1939 she began to write a diary. When war broke out she and her sister were living in Przemysl with her grandparents. Separated from her mother by the war, the next few years saw her living under first Soviet, then Nazi occupation, and the creation of the ghetto. In the summer of 1942, Renia was forced into hiding to escape the liquidation of the ghetto. A few days later, her hiding place was discovered and she was shot; she was just eighteen.
At a moment when basic agreement over simple truths has become a political battleground and history a weapon, the publication of the book, Renia's Diary, offers a reminder of the power of bearing witness * New York Times * Astonishing... A new invaluable contribution to Holocaust literature * Smithsonian Magazine * It is as though the murderous machine of Hitler's vision and the barbarity being brought upon her people couldn't silence the integrity of her voice... Renia emerges as a poet of real lyricism and emotional heft, which makes her demise all the more tragic * Irish Independent * Recall[s] moments of intense happiness in the gathering gloom * Times * A work which shows us that the worst atrocities of the twentieth century did not happen overnight, they happened slowly and painfully against the backdrop of the lives and loves of ordinary people -- Andrew McMillan, author of physical and playtime