Little Princes by Conor Grennan
What is a person without someone standing behind them providing them with support and pushing them to new goals? Success not only entails the one who succeeds but it also includes the support system that helped along the way. Within the book Little Princes, the author Conor Grennan embarks on a trip around the world, which in turn becomes a lifelong journey he never expected. Grennan’s journey involves saving trafﬁcked children of Nepal and bringing them home to their families. The orphaned children Grennan saves were ﬁrst taken by a man who promised the children’s families safety and security. but in reality the con artist makes the children orphans. Not only in Nepal does Grennan begin a lifelong goal to save the lost children, but he also stumbles upon unexpected happiness.
Throughout Grennan’s time in Nepal he widens his horizons and falls in love with a woman named Liz. The two are married and Liz is there for Grennan as he builds a non-proﬁt organization and helps the lost children. Without the love and support that Liz provides, Grennan may not have been able to push through the tough times in his trip, and accomplish his goal of returning the lost children. Although Liz is sparingly mentioned within the book, she plays a crucial role in Grennan’s life as he faces obstacles in Nepal. Grennan chooses to keep Liz a small part of the book as the focus is on the children, but he includes her to provide the audience with a different side of his story. The amount of danger Grennan faced in Nepal was clearly present, and Liz acknowledged this fact within all the emails she exchanged with Grennan.
She would inform Grennan to be as safe as possible which constantly reminded himself that he not only had the kids to work for but a woman he loved worrying for him. Just before Grennan leaves for the airport to depart to Humla he writes to Liz, “‘You will,’ I wrote. ‘You think I’m going to miss my one chance to meet you?” (160). This expresses Grennan’s sincerity of pushing through any danger that he faces so that he can meet Liz. While Grennan does his volunteer work for the lost children, he is also motivated by the passion he shares with Liz. Rinjin also calls Grennan out because he had caught him smiling frequently over the past three weeks (199), showing that Grennan constantly thought of Liz and what she meant to him.
With the thought of Liz in Grennan’s head he always had a motivator to continue on and ﬁght for the children. Liz is the most powerful motivation when Grennan is injured and stuck coming back from Humla. “The only thing I could think about, though, was that I had to meet Liz” (208). After having this thought, Grennan proceeds to walk an insane amount of miles so that he may meet Liz. Here Grennan could have been stuck and lost forever in the mountains had he not had a woman he was ﬁghting for. Without Liz, Grennan may have lacked in the drive and ability that he displayed while searching. Liz provided Grennan with a different side, a side of love and passion that he then used to connect children with their families so that they may experience the same feelings. If Grennan had chosen not to include Liz in his book there would have been a lack in passion and a question in his motivational drive.
Grennan uses the word “intense” (201) to describe hisjourney, showing that while he enjoyed helping the children the work was challenging. Liz not only provided motivation, but a pleasant escape from the troubles Grennan faced in Nepal. When Grennan ﬁnally encounters Liz for the ﬁrst time he describes it as ”She smelled so lovely, her hair and her skin so fresh, so unlike the dust and grime of my last few weeks” (220). Here Grennan uses an almost relieved tone to describe his moment with Liz as he contrasts it with the rough and exhausted tone he uses to describe his last weeks in Humla. With the amount of stress that Grennan faced, he needed a stress reliever and talking with Liz provided that outlet. On pages 224225 Grennan discusses that he had not truly realized how mortifying the trek back home was, and as he has nightmares Liz sneaks in and holds his hand checking on his well being.
This sense of caring is the ﬁrst motion of love Conor has experienced in quite some time, giving him the chance to block out the horrors he had been dealing with. Liz was now doubling as Grennan’s inspiration and his escape so that he would not crack from the amount of stress he experienced. The role of Liz in Grennan’s book is vital as part of his success is owed to her for all the help she provided. Liz offers readers a romantic side of the tragic story that is told, which could keep some of the audience more interested. Although Liz is not frequently mentioned in the book, she plays a critical role in Grennan’s motivation and ability to carry on through extreme times in Nepal.
Just as when some animal’s partners pass away their behavior may change or they themselves may pass shortly after, Grennan feeds off of Liz in a positive way so that he can continue on. Conor Grennan and Liz Flannigan together make up a team, while the reader is never directly told this. Grennan did the actual labor, while Liz played just as an important part in providing support and care for her husband’s passion. The book without Liz would have been less pleasurable as readers would not have been able to experience the romantic relief that Liz gave. Together the two made an unstoppable pair that returned children to their homes, and still work together today with their organization.