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Posted by on Dec 6, 2012 in Book Review, Guest Post, Travel, Volunteer Abroad |

Little Princes: A Book Review

This book review by Kelli Mutchler originally appeared on her blog, Too Mutch for Words.

Too many travel narratives are written about the highly improbable, crazy or suicidal, vain-glorious antics someone participates in simply to publish.  Too few are written accidentally, by honest travelers. Conor Grennan is at least frank.  He confesses, within the first pages, that his round-the-world-trip plus volunteer-stint-in-Nepal was planned as a feel-good future pickup line.

But then he meets the orphans at Little Princes.  And Grennan – a 20-something American with no prior experience in childcare or global development- discovers that he is more than just a foreign helper in an orphanage for trafficked children.

As it turns out, wondering what you’re supposed to do in an orphanage is like wondering what you’re supposed to do at the running of the bulls in Spain- you work it out pretty quickly.

Grennan’s initial experience turns into a three-year effort to reconnect children with their families.  Open and eager, Grennan never admits to anything but a surprising love for the kids in his charge.  During dangerous treks into rebel-controlled regions, and unexpected moments of contentment, Grennan keeps his tone refreshingly witty and straightforward. He is a normal person who shares a true story, not one fashioned to impress readers.  What better proof, than that a portion of all book sales goes to his organization, Next Generation Nepal, which continues to work with trafficked kids.

Writer Kelli Mutchler is a free-footed American, swapped at birth with a responsible, hard-working accountant. Tired of reading foreign postcards, her parents still lament this accidental switch… Yet Kelli left all those expectations in South Dakota, USA, to prove that Yanks CAN – and DO – pursue alternative, international lifestyles. A regular contributor and writer for YouthLeader! magazine and WeBlogTheWorld, she’s probably just like you: a bit of a freelancer who refuses to stop at anything short of a full passport and a PULITZER.