- Publisher: William Morrow; 1st Printing edition (2010)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0061930059
- ISBN-13: 978-0061930058
- ASIN: B005UVQ5BW
- Product Dimensions: 6.3 x 1.2 x 9.3 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.8 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 646 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,296,723 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Little Princes: One Man's Promise to Bring Home the Lost Children of Nepal Hardcover – 2010
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An Amazon Book with Buzz: "Ghosted"
Seven perfect days. Then he disappeared. A love story with a secret at its heart. Learn more
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In search of adventure, 29-year-old Conor Grennan traded his day job for a year-long trip around the globe, a journey that began with a three-month stint volunteering at the Little Princes Children’s Home, an orphanage in war-torn Nepal.
Conor was initially reluctant to volunteer, unsure whether he had the proper skill, or enough passion, to get involved in a developing country in the middle of a civil war. But he was soon overcome by the herd of rambunctious, resilient children who would challenge and reward him in a way that he had never imagined. When Conor learned the unthinkable truth about their situation, he was stunned: The children were not orphans at all. Child traffickers were promising families in remote villages to protect their children from the civil war—for a huge fee—by taking them to safety. They would then abandon the children far from home, in the chaos of Nepal’s capital, Kathmandu.
For Conor, what began as a footloose adventure becomes a commitment to reunite the children he had grown to love with their families, but this would be no small task. He would risk his life on a journey through the legendary mountains of Nepal, facing the dangers of a bloody civil war and a debilitating injury. Waiting for Conor back in Kathmandu, and hopeful he would make it out before being trapped in by snow, was the woman who would eventually become his wife and share his life’s work.
Little Princes is a true story of families and children, and what one person is capable of when faced with seemingly insurmountable odds. At turns tragic, joyful, and hilarious, Little Princes is a testament to the power of faith and the ability of love to carry us beyond our wildest expectations.
An Amazon Exclusive Essay by Conor Grennan
How Taking Notes and Living without Indoor Plumbing Would Change My Life
When I was living in Nepal, I kept a notebook with me at all times. It was a small Nepali-made notebook—the brand name was Happy Days! or some such thing— and it made me smile every time I looked at it. I took it everywhere I went, and wrote in it often.
The children constantly asked me what I was writing, and I would tell them I was recording our conversations. That was true, but it was more than that. I was also recording everything I found strange in my new home. Like the fact that the kids chewed on chicken bones until they were practically dust, or that one of the boys, Santosh, had a digital watch which he’d borrowed from a friend that, along with displaying the hour, flashed “I Love You!” once per second.
There were times I was caught without my notebook, like in the middle of a soccer game when Dawa’s shot—destined for just inside the invisible right post—was blocked by the broadside of a cow, and I had to try to recall from memory the captivating debate over the role of livestock in team sports, and whether or not the goal should count. (It didn’t.)
Then, when the children would go to bed at 8 p.m., I would bundle up in two or three fleeces, a hat, and woolen gloves I had cut the fingers out of; I’d pull out my notebook and I’d sit down to write my travel blog, copying everything I had put into the notebook over the course of the day into an old, ultra-light Dell I’d bought off eBay for about 200 dollars. It was pretty much useless except as a word processor, but it was the most precious thing I owned. Over the next three years, traveling the globe and living in Nepal, I would end up typing just over half-a-million words on that little workhorse—five times the length of Little Princes.
It turned out that writing everything down in the moment was critical because the more time I spent in Nepal, the more normal these “strange” things became. It became normal to watch my blankets being made from scratch on the ground outside my house, to trade broken flip-flops for potatoes, and to use outhouses on a daily basis without thinking twice about it. (Did you hear that, people? Outhouses!)
The funny thing is, with all that note-taking, I never had any intention of writing a book about my time in Nepal. It honestly never occurred to me that it was a much of a story until someone else mentioned the idea to me.
Once I started writing the book, however, I couldn’t stop. I went back to my old notebooks and I was suddenly in Nepal again, hearing in my mind exactly how Hriteek had laughed, or Nishal had protested, or Raju had squealed as he’d run through the house, bare feet padding against the cold cement floors.
Little Princes, the book, allowed me to revisit that wonderful, difficult, challenging, happy time of my life. I still get back to Nepal, of course, and I still see the children. But they change, they grow up. Writing Little Princes allowed me to visit the children as they were. And also, as the person I was.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From Publishers Weekly
Starred Review. Grennan, who once worked at the East West Institute in Prague, embarked on a round-the-world trip in 2006, starting with a stint volunteering for an orphanage six miles south of Kathmandu. The orphanage, called the Little Princes Children's Home, housed 18 children from the remote province of Humla, rescued from a notorious child trafficker who had bought the children from poor villagers terrified of the Maoist insurgents eager for new recruits; the parents hoped to keep their children safe, but the children often ended up as slaves. Grennan was stunned by the trauma endured by these children, who he grew to love over two months, and after completing his world tour, returned to the orphanage and vowed not only to locate seven Humla orphans who had vanished from a foster home, but also to find the parents of the children in the orphanage. This required starting up a nonprofit organization in America, Next Generation Nepal, raising funds, buying a house in Kathmandu for the children's home, and trekking into the mountains of Humla to locate the parents. Grennan's work is by turns self-pokingly humorous, exciting, and inspiring. (Feb.)
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Top customer reviews
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Conor Grennan’s writing is laid back yet intrigues the reader through the facts and the seriousness of the issues that he addresses. His wit and humorous personality shows through his different relationships with the children and essentially being a first-time parent. This book leaves the reader with more knowledge of the family’s needs in foreign countries like Nepal and the need for the development of more non-profit organizations. This heartwarming book is one that you can share with the whole family because of the values that it teaches.
This book is simultaneously delightful and serious (concerning child trafficking in Nepal). The personalities of the children are completely engaging, and their safety and well-being is always of top importance. The book simultaneously provides 4 things:
1. An examination of child trafficking in Nepal. Many of the children in the orphanages are victims of child trafficking. The book describes how and why these children are taken; what their life is like; and how they are recovered.
2. An examination of family reunification in Nepal. How do you find parents and families once separation has occurred? Nepal is a rugged country, and many of these children are from very isolated regions. Some are taken when they are very young and may have incomplete memories of their homes. Once families have been confirmed, what factors weigh for and against reunification? The author provides many insights in this area.
3. A cultural explanation. The book provides a wealth of information about Nepal, its customs, its geography, and its people.
4. A wonderful adventure story. The book features lots of adventure, both in the traditional sense and in terms of Conor's internal change. By the end, Conor has founded an orphanage in Nepal, reunified a number of children with their families, and formed a non-profit organization in the United States (Next Generation Nepal, nextgenerationnepal.com).
This book is completely engrossing. It discusses a serious topic--child trafficking in Nepal--with warmth, passion, humor, and joy. I highly recommend it.
Well-written and wonderful story you won’t want to put down!