Nick Mancini Organic Gardening Simplified on facebook Read Nick Mancini's of the Organic Gardener Simplified current tips on his blog Read about Sunlight and Soil by Nick Mancini of Organic Gardening Simplified (PDF format) Read about Collecting and Sterilizing Seeds by Nick Mancini of Organic Gardening Simplified (PDF format) Read about Starting Vegetables by Nick Mancini of Organic Gardening Simplified (PDF format) Read about Starting Vegetables by Nick Mancini of Organic Gardening Simplified (PDF format) Books written by Nick Mancini - Organic Gardening Simplified Classes taught by Nick Mancini for Organic Gardening Simplified Contact Nick Mancini of Organic Gardening Simplified for classes, speaking engagements back to home page of Organic Gardening Simplified by Nick Mancini



Rainbows in the Fountain is the story of the author’s childhood in Italy during the 1940s and 50s. It begins with the German occupation of his village in W.W.II. His grandmother scuffles with the soldiers who have seized her home, while her son—the author’s father—a fugitive from the Italian army, hides in the attic in fear of discovery.

It tells of his three mothers, the interaction and conflicts between the disparate personalities living under the same roof, his struggles to overcome a childhood stutter, his adventures, and his loving relationship with his grandparents—especially his grandfather, who enchanted him with magical storytelling and instilled in the author a compassion and respect for people and nature.

An autographed copy of Rainbows in the Fountain, with a personalized inscription of your choice —in English or Italian—is available for $16.95. Free shipping in U.S. via first class mail.

Buy Regular Copies Online:

Comments from Readers

You always were a good storyteller, over the years, as you related bits and pieces of your experience in the old country or told me about various characters in your adopted country. Your written memoir is a very enjoyable reflection of the same talent.

I’m amazed how you painted such a vibrant, detailed picture of your childhood experiences. I felt as though I was there, seeing things through your young eyes and feeling experiences through your heart and very spirited mind.

I kept saying to myself “Wow,” what he went through! Especially as you recounted the deaths of your mother, then your cherished Nonna, then grandfather, and the tough adjustment you had with your stepmother (the cat killer!)

As I read Rainbows in the Fountain, it was with amusement and awe, particularly at your willingness and bravery in leaving your homeland. Your writing benefited from your remembrance of your emotions through all those experiences—not just the facts—and it all rang true.

Thanks for sharing all that with the rest of us!


I’ve just finished the first chapter and already know that I’m going to like the book. It’s an incredible achievement. A labor of love. You have much to look forward to.


The library finally got your book in last week and I just finished reading it. I can't tell you how much I enjoyed it! It's a wonderful story--something young people of today should read. I always knew you were special, but I guess I never fully appreciated your wonderful talent for storytelling.

It's a remarkable tale, and makes me admire immigrants even more for their adaptability. I never realized what a feisty kid you were or that you stuttered as a child. I could picture the people and the settings by your descriptions. (It would make a neat movie or TV mini-series.)

I only wish you had included a family tree in the beginning. Perhaps you could include one in the next edition. It would also be interesting to have a sequel--describing your arrival and adjustment to America. The photos are priceless! Congratulations on a job well done!


As soon as I ordered another book, I found the third one here. So yesterday I finished it. What a lovely, lovely book, Nick. It causes both tears and smiles. I am still thinking movie--beautiful, poignant movie about the terrible tragedies (but also some great loves) visited on a little boy who in spite of that grew up to be... well, they won't know that he grew up to a great guy, will they? I think I should be thanking you for writing it, so I will... Thanks.


I just finished your excellent memoir and wanted to let you know how much I enjoyed it. You successfully created a picture of small village Italian life with all the eccentricities and sorrows that includes.

There was great humor (I especially liked the part about looking for Nonna's testicles) as well as scenes that made me shake my head in agreement (like the description of Don Paolo--the corrupt priest.)

To lose your mother, Nonna, and Nonno in such a short period of time must have been very hard--especially in light of your "evil stepmother" Nina and your father's subsequent bad behavior. It occurred to me that your life has parallels to Cinderella. Congratulations on a very nice piece of work.


I just finished reading Rainbows in the Fountain and loved it. When Umberto told me of its completion, I had to buy one, and when I read it, I felt that I was with you.

Coming from an Italian family, it made me feel warm inside, remembering the many customs and traditions that have somewhat faded away today.

Thank you,


I'm reading your incredible book! It’s so moving and I’m learning a lot. I just wanted to let you know how much I’m enjoying your work. Thanks for writing such a special keepsake!



website by
the big picture