Books that changed me – Dei Bambini Non si sa Niente

Books that changed me:

Title: Dei bambini non si sa niente

(English title: What We Don’t Know about Children)

Author: Simona Vinci

bambini     what we dont know o djeci

This is a book I read years ago as a very young person. I read it in Croatian translation under the title: O djeci ne znamo ništa.

This is not a book for people who get scared easily.

Main focus of the book are group of children age 10 to 15 who left to themselves for the summer begin to explore their sexuality.

This is a story about coming of age and social need to be a part of a group. We read the story from POV of a ten year old girl named Martina.

I found this book to be horribly fascinating.

While I was reading it I was assaulted by many disturbing images but at the same time I was driven by curiosity to read on in a similar manner as the protagonists in the book.

Sexual curiosity is a natural thing.

Java Printing

The good, the bad, the joy and the pain, even horror and disgust are very much real.

What started out as a summer break children past time story turned into a morbid and tragic tale of when things go wrong.

Things went wrong when children who were turning into young people tried to imitate their elders sexual desires.

Eroticism is tainted by the desires of adults that leave the children as victims of their own confusion and powerless.

Children may not always listen to what their elders say but they watch and see what we are not telling them.


What I learned from reading this book is that sometimes we cannot leave things to chance and keep quite about certain truths that we are all part of. Childhood is a time that needs to be kept safe and preserved for every child so it can safely make a transition to a healthy adult individual. Keeping quiet is not keeping safe.

This is a hard book with a heavy theme.

“…brave exploration of eroticism and a harsh indictment of a society whose dark, disturbing aspects leave that most fragile, vulnerable blessing–childhood–forever at risk.”

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