In Reading Like a Writer, Francine Prose advised aspiring writers that the best way to hone their craft is to read works of great literature closely, word by word. In her new book, Anne Frank: The Book, The Life, The Afterlife, Prose applies that method to the famous young diarist’s work. By Prose’s measure, Frank’s diary has achieved its success not only because of what it documents but also because of her remarkable skill as a writer.

What Prose begins as a literary investigation expands to encompass the history of the diary and its author, as well as its many reincarnations as a musical, a film, a brand, and an inspiration for human rights organizations and classroom curricula. Prose spoke to Vox Tablet host Sara Ivry about the diary and its impact.