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Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Education in Afghanistan and Pakistan

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From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian’s efforts to promote peace through education In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Aza From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian’s efforts to promote peace through education In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan after a massive earthquake hit the region in 2005; and the unique ways he has built relationships with Islamic clerics, militia commanders, and tribal leaders. He shares for the first time his broader vision to promote peace through education and literacy, as well as touching on military matters, Islam, and women—all woven together with the many rich personal stories of the people who have been involved in this remarkable two-decade humanitarian effort. Since the 2006 publication of Three Cups of Tea, Mortenson has traveled across the U.S. and the world to share his vision with hundreds of thousands of people. He has met with heads of state, top military officials, and leading politicians who all seek his advice and insight. The continued phenomenal success of Three Cups of Tea proves that there is an eager and committed audience for Mortenson’s work and message.


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From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian’s efforts to promote peace through education In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Aza From the author of the #1 bestseller Three Cups of Tea, the continuing story of this determined humanitarian’s efforts to promote peace through education In this dramatic first-person narrative, Greg Mortenson picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off in 2003, recounting his relentless, ongoing efforts to establish schools for girls in Afghanistan; his extensive work in Azad Kashmir and Pakistan after a massive earthquake hit the region in 2005; and the unique ways he has built relationships with Islamic clerics, militia commanders, and tribal leaders. He shares for the first time his broader vision to promote peace through education and literacy, as well as touching on military matters, Islam, and women—all woven together with the many rich personal stories of the people who have been involved in this remarkable two-decade humanitarian effort. Since the 2006 publication of Three Cups of Tea, Mortenson has traveled across the U.S. and the world to share his vision with hundreds of thousands of people. He has met with heads of state, top military officials, and leading politicians who all seek his advice and insight. The continued phenomenal success of Three Cups of Tea proves that there is an eager and committed audience for Mortenson’s work and message.

30 review for Stones into Schools: Promoting Peace with Education in Afghanistan and Pakistan

  1. 5 out of 5

    Eileen Souza

    It's rare that a second book about the same topic can be even better than the first, but I have to say that I enjoyed Stones into Schools even more that Three Cups of Tea. I thought that this book was excellent! It was a great way to learn more about what has been going on in Pakistan and Afghanistan since 2001, and even more it continues to be an inspiration to see how much this man, and his dirty dozen friends, can impact the lives of girls in the most remote places on earth. We hear so much n It's rare that a second book about the same topic can be even better than the first, but I have to say that I enjoyed Stones into Schools even more that Three Cups of Tea. I thought that this book was excellent! It was a great way to learn more about what has been going on in Pakistan and Afghanistan since 2001, and even more it continues to be an inspiration to see how much this man, and his dirty dozen friends, can impact the lives of girls in the most remote places on earth. We hear so much negativity these days - this story gives you hope that hard (HARD) work does pay off. As for why I think this book was better - the first book told a great story, but it was done in a way that was a bit frazzled and scatterbrained, which as Mr. Mortenson declares himself is exactly how he is. Someone took the editing reigns on this one, and the story line was much more linear (as linear as you can get when you're building dozens of schools throughout two countries at one time) more human(he actually told it from his own perspective, which was nice)and the stories and the hard work of the people who are making these changes were highlighted just as much as the people who have been positively impacted. I also liked the addition of maps of not only the locations of the schools, but also of the ethnic distribution, and topography. He also wrote 8 pages of acknowledgements - and that has to win your heart over. Great book, and once I make sure it gets passed around to everyone I know who wants to read it, I will be gifting it to the library, so that it can impact others as well.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ben Warren

    Things to think about from the first 50 pgs: 1) Girl Effect - changing communities through the education of women 2) "Last person First" Principle - is this a good principle in missions as well? 3) Mortenson's raggedy Pakistani staff. Is it much different from the 12 disciples - uneducated, yet perfectly in tune with the local culture and passionate for the cause of their leader.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Claudia

    Mortenson shows such a power and a confidence in his story in this book. I think one reason is because he keeps the spotlight OFF himself. He tells moving stories of others, making them the heroes and heroines of his book. He talks honestly about how uncomfortable he feels with attention, and he generously shares the credit for the successes of his schools with so many others. His stories made me laugh out loud, like the Taliban sympathizers who visit a school and play gleefully on the playground Mortenson shows such a power and a confidence in his story in this book. I think one reason is because he keeps the spotlight OFF himself. He tells moving stories of others, making them the heroes and heroines of his book. He talks honestly about how uncomfortable he feels with attention, and he generously shares the credit for the successes of his schools with so many others. His stories made me laugh out loud, like the Taliban sympathizers who visit a school and play gleefully on the playground equipment, then demand a school -- and playground -- of their own. He made me cry as he told the stories of the children who lost their opportunities to go to school, one young boy stepped on a landmine and never got to attend school. And Farzana who explained to Dr. Greg what the devastating earthquake in Kashmir felt like...who explains she and the other girls in school need desks to feel safe. Mortenson manages to find amazing, wise mentor: his father, Haji Ali, the village elder from the first book who inspired Greg to build his first school, and in this book, Abdul Rashid Khan, the Afghan elder whose school took 10 years to build. Mortenson's passion for education, especially the education of girls, has exacted a terrible price for him and his family. But they continue to go forward, making a mark on the future.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Tony Taylor

    An outstanding read ... if you enjoyed "Three Cups of Tea," you will enjoy this more... it is the content and the purpose that makes it so great. Unfortunately I think that some people were turned off by the title of his first book by not understanding the message (it is not about little old ladies sipping tea and gossiping.) "Stones into Bridges" picks up where his first book left off, and is current right up to October 2009. Greg Mortenson has received well deserved recognition for what he and An outstanding read ... if you enjoyed "Three Cups of Tea," you will enjoy this more... it is the content and the purpose that makes it so great. Unfortunately I think that some people were turned off by the title of his first book by not understanding the message (it is not about little old ladies sipping tea and gossiping.) "Stones into Bridges" picks up where his first book left off, and is current right up to October 2009. Greg Mortenson has received well deserved recognition for what he and his non-profit organization, the Central Asia Institute are doing in both Pakistan and Afghanistan to bring schools to the most impoverished parts of those countries against all odds. To date they have established 131 schools, many of them for girls only, and in doing so have gone a long way in helping establish peace in the region as well as good will toward Americans. Mortenson has gained the confidence and respect of leaders both in the civil and military segments... he has informally advised both the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff at the Pentagon as well as the generals on the ground in Afghanistan. Fortunately for the reader, the book is well written and is not dry reading despite the fact that the reader gains a tremendous insight into the people, their customs, and the geography of the area. Read this book, and when you are finished, go to its Web site to learn more about this story and to see more great photos.

  5. 5 out of 5

    Marcy prager

    I learned so much about Greg Mortenson, the man, when reading this wonderful book. His sense of humor, his passion, his mission is heard and felt throughout this story. Now I really understand what the CAI is, and who the people are that run it. The Central Asia Institute is run by quirky, brave people who Greg met throughout his travels to Pakistan and Afganistan and found worthy enough to help him fulfill his dream of building schools for girls in the remote regions of Pakistan, and now Afgani I learned so much about Greg Mortenson, the man, when reading this wonderful book. His sense of humor, his passion, his mission is heard and felt throughout this story. Now I really understand what the CAI is, and who the people are that run it. The Central Asia Institute is run by quirky, brave people who Greg met throughout his travels to Pakistan and Afganistan and found worthy enough to help him fulfill his dream of building schools for girls in the remote regions of Pakistan, and now Afganistan as well. After the major earthquake in Pakistan, the CAI provided tent-schools in Azad Kashmir, the earthquake zone. The CAI set up water-delivery systems, hired teachers, built schools with the guidance from Chinese experts, who knew how to build schools that were earthquake-proof. As time has passed, the CAI's role has continuously emerged. In order to help more girls get a higher education, Greg has arranged for the smartest and the brightest girls to get scholarships so they can go back to their villages and help their families become self-sufficient. Not all families will let their girls leave home for various reasons, and their scholarship awaits these girls for years... I met Greg Mortenson when I was in Atlanta for the NCSS conference in November. He was the keynote speaker. He spoke without notes. He was brilliant. His passion pervaded the conference room filled with teachers. What this book expresses that he did not express to his audience that day, is that the cost of fame from his book Three Cups of Tea, is a double-edged sword. He wants to be in Asia, working directly with communities, with teachers, with students. In Asia, he lives on bottles of Ibuprophen for the pain of an aching body who lives without sleep, rattling in trucks for endless hours on unpaved roads in the most rural of areas to meet with the heads of tribal communities who want to build a school for the girls. Greg finds this life "energizing and inspiring." Being in the United States, engaged in non-stop promotion, salesmanship, and fund-raising leaves him feeling "drained and debilitated." Greg continues to tour the U.S. to provide the needed money to help build more and more schools for the Pakistan and Afganistan people. Greg continues to witness the aftermath of war. War continues to be the most costly for the innocent people who live in the countries of Pakistan and Afganistan. In Afganistan, the Taliban continues to gain power by hurtling granades into schools and terrorizing innocent people. Greg is now working with the United States military to help them rebuild Afganistan. Greg continues to help the leaders of the military in his Pentagon briefings to help them see that the aim of the military "is to enhance security by fostering relationships and building a sense of trust at the grassroots level with community leaders, village elders, and tribal authorities." Knowing the culture, respecting the culture, is most important. Greg receives many letters and e-mails from people who had served in Afganistan who are fully convinced that "providing young men and women with a moderate education was the most potent and cost-effective way to combat the growth of Islamic extremism." Greg Mortenson continues to be one of my heroes. I am proud that the school I teach in has chosen "Pennies for Peace" as a global commitment to raise money to help build one of Greg's schools in either Pakistan or Afganistan.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Savitri

    Amazing book! Amazing person! Amazing people!! A MUST read!!! I thought Three Cups of Tea was great but I have to say, this one is way better. The book is more personal, written in first person, and there is more history. I've definitely learned a little bit more about Afghanistan and its' diverse and wonderful people (and not wonderful). The book has also made me a bit more warm and fuzzy towards the military... which seems odd coming from an Air Force spouse. It's just that despite my support f Amazing book! Amazing person! Amazing people!! A MUST read!!! I thought Three Cups of Tea was great but I have to say, this one is way better. The book is more personal, written in first person, and there is more history. I've definitely learned a little bit more about Afghanistan and its' diverse and wonderful people (and not wonderful). The book has also made me a bit more warm and fuzzy towards the military... which seems odd coming from an Air Force spouse. It's just that despite my support for the troops, esp. my husband, and my understanding that sometimes people do need some butt kicking I am not for war - it just seems so barbaric and a waste of many things. So for me, as somebody who's about education and diplomacy, it was nice to know that there are many people in the military who also believe that it's not all missiles and guns. I love all the stories in this book. Each page made me realize how lucky my girls and I are. I can't wait for out oldest to be a bit bigger so that we can read the young version of Three Cups! I'd love to meet Greg one day. I wouldn't mind being one of those people driving 8hrs to listen to his speech and then open my pocket book. It'd be an honor to just shake his hand! I hope he writes another book because right now I am just so curious to know what happened since Oct. 2009. It's too bad I read this book on the first day of 2011 because it'll be hard to top! This kind of book is just my cup of tea ;)

  7. 4 out of 5

    Wendy

    Originally 4 stars 2014 update: After reading some of the controversy surrounding Greg Mortenson, my opinion on him has plummeted. He is accused of fabricating the story of him getting kidnapped by Taliban and the story of getting lost on the way down from K2 and promising the tribe that saved him that he would return to build a school (the whole premise to the book!). He is also accused of gross mismanagement of funds and using donated money for his own purposes, private jets, promoting his book Originally 4 stars 2014 update: After reading some of the controversy surrounding Greg Mortenson, my opinion on him has plummeted. He is accused of fabricating the story of him getting kidnapped by Taliban and the story of getting lost on the way down from K2 and promising the tribe that saved him that he would return to build a school (the whole premise to the book!). He is also accused of gross mismanagement of funds and using donated money for his own purposes, private jets, promoting his book, etc. The jury is still out on what he did do or didn't do, but there is enough evidence that I won't recommend the book anymore... CAI has accumulated over $70 Million and built less than 170 schools. How is $400,000 / school a good return on an investment, when in his book he claimed he could build a school for $20K or build it and fund it for $50K? Where did the other $61 Million go then? He does admit some financial wrongdoing and stretching the truth on some stories, but not specifics. That sours the whole story for me. I'm glad I never donated to his charity (Central Asia Institute). No wrong doing has been attributed to the co-author David Oliver Relin. And the attacks on his book and character likely drove Relin to suicide.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Laurel

    If you haven't read this yet, put down what you ARE reading, and head to the library or bookstore for this book. Actually, if you haven't read Mortenson's first book, Three Cups of Tea, read that first to get the background, and then dive into this one. This true story of what one man can start - in this case, educating girls in the most remote parts of Central Asia - the mountains of Pakistan and Afghanistan - is not just an inspiring read, but an amazing testament to the power of what people c If you haven't read this yet, put down what you ARE reading, and head to the library or bookstore for this book. Actually, if you haven't read Mortenson's first book, Three Cups of Tea, read that first to get the background, and then dive into this one. This true story of what one man can start - in this case, educating girls in the most remote parts of Central Asia - the mountains of Pakistan and Afghanistan - is not just an inspiring read, but an amazing testament to the power of what people can accomplish when they have an overpowering mission. Mortenson's colleagues in Asia come to life in this book, working respectfully with the locals while they drive themselves unmercifully to accomplish miracles at warp speed. In the meantime, Mortenson is driving himself sick in the states, raising funds for their work and positively influencing U.S. military commanders. I had to stop after each chapter to remind myself to breathe - I was so amazed. Beautiful photographs and delightful quotes adorn the chapter headings as well. Give this to all your friends. The outcome of Mortenson's work is vital to the health of the world.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

    Following where Three Cups of Tea left off, Stones into Schools is Greg Mortenson's account of his nonprofit Central Asia Institute's endeavors to build schools for girls in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Early on in the book, Mortenson tells of meeting a band of Kirghiz horsemen, who extract a promise from him to build a school in a remote region of Afghanistan. This was 1999, and the promise came with a multitude of difficulties, not the least of which was the conflict between the increasing power Following where Three Cups of Tea left off, Stones into Schools is Greg Mortenson's account of his nonprofit Central Asia Institute's endeavors to build schools for girls in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Early on in the book, Mortenson tells of meeting a band of Kirghiz horsemen, who extract a promise from him to build a school in a remote region of Afghanistan. This was 1999, and the promise came with a multitude of difficulties, not the least of which was the conflict between the increasing power of the Taliban and the locals who desired the hope of education for their youth. Of course a full out war with the United States and it's allies was only a few years away and that presented it's own kind of opportunities and roadblocks. I have to say, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. There is a bit of a recap of Three Cups of Tea, but the stories of Mortenson and his colleagues attempts to build schools in these secluded areas were gripping. Especially touching were the harrowing accounts of the earthquake that shattered the region in 2005, and the helplessness felt by Mortenson as he sat halfway around the world. In the spring of 2011, a 60 Minutes piece accused Mortenson of lies and fraud regarding the story he told in his books and the handling of funds for the Central Asia Institute. I read some articles about the accusations and watched the 60 Minutes piece. What first struck me is that the main accuser was vagabond writer Jon Krakauer. I had recently watched a movie about his life called Into the Wild. My thoughts about Krakauer were that he was at best, a selfish, soulless individual, and at worst, someone who is mentally imbalanced. Krakauer visited with Mortenson's fellow K-2 traveller, who questioned whether Mortenson did, in fact, actually visit Korphe. Krakauer, then accused Mortenson of making up the whole story of walking into Korphe, disoriented and sick, being taken care of there, and promising a young girl he would build a school there. I found it interesting that 60 Minutes didn't bother to go to Korphe in their story, and I found a blogger online who recently visited the school and related how all the locals loved Mortenson, and told her that his story was absolutely true. The nurse who cared for him even shared her story with the blogger. As for the abuse of charitable funds, I don't have firsthand knowledge of these accounts, but I do know using common sense, is definitely not enough to avoid mishandling funds. I used to work for a lecture agency. If a client was asked to speak at a college while in the midst of a book tour, it would not be unusual to "piggyback" off the tour, and have the college pay only the fee, and not the travel expenses. The wording of the contract would read "inclusive of travel expenses." So, if Greg Mortenson charged his travel expenses to CAI to promote the book in order to the promote the charity, but took money for the college speaking engagement, fingers could easily be pointed accusing him of charging the charity for travel what was already paid for by the college lecture. The wives of many Presidents have complained that taking family vacations on Air Force One requires the family to reimburse the government for the equivalent of first class commercial airfare, with the exception of the President. If Mortenson's family accompanied him to a CAI related event on board a private plane, the same reimbursement would apply, even though it does seem ridiculous. Like I said, I don't know the exact specifics, but I believe that Mortenson probably did not deliberately intend to defraud CAI. He was required by the Montana Attorney General to reimburse a million dollars to the charity and to step down from his board position. I found the 60 Minutes piece to be weak and an abuse of the power wielded by the media. As a result, Mortenson's character was defamed and the charity has suffered. I wonder how many people saw the follow-up article in Forbes Magazine where the K-2 companion retracted his comment to Krakauer, saying that Mortenson definitely had the opportunity to get to Korphe and most likely did so? Mortenson stated over and over again in his books, that he disliked being in the public eye. He put himself out there for these girls who just wanted to go to school. I hope that there is a silver lining to all of this. Perhaps now, he can just do what he does best: build schools.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Dolly

    As a followup to Three Cups of Tea, I found this book to be very interesting and timely. If you haven't read the first book, you might not be able to follow along as easily with the various people and places mentioned, although the books do stand alone. It is a quick read and I was highly impressed with the way that the small organization, Central Asia Institute, has blossomed with financial support and additional manpower to become a powerful force in bringing much-needed education to children As a followup to Three Cups of Tea, I found this book to be very interesting and timely. If you haven't read the first book, you might not be able to follow along as easily with the various people and places mentioned, although the books do stand alone. It is a quick read and I was highly impressed with the way that the small organization, Central Asia Institute, has blossomed with financial support and additional manpower to become a powerful force in bringing much-needed education to children (especially girls) in Afghanistan and Pakistan. It's also heartening to know of the efforts made on behalf of those striken by the terrible earthquake in Pakistan in 2005. Although the author, Greg Mortenson, wearies of the effort of fundraising, pressing the flesh and speaking before thousands of people on a daily basis, he has shown what you can accomplish with a lot of publicity and a ton of dedication. This book isn't as much of a love-fest for Greg as the other book; he shines the spotlight on the members of his "Dirty Dozen" for accomplishing the lion's share of the work in country. And he shows his weaker side and his frustrations when things don't work out as planned. But it also shows his faith in others and his willingness to let go when he has to. Sometimes I find some unusual coincidences in my eclectic reading choices. While reading this book, I found yet another coincidence that leaves me wondering how truly random our choices are. Greg Mortenson mentions a few times in this book that he communicated with Lt Col (and later Col) Christopher Kolenda, who was the Commander at FOB (Forward Operating Base) Naray, in the Kunar Province of Afghanistand. The book also mentions that Col Kolenda (when he was a Major) authored the book, Leadership: The Warrior's Art, which I just happen to be in the middle of reading right now. It is not a popular or best-selling book (it is part of the Army War College library of books) and I just happened to come across it. One of the biggest criticisms of Kolenda's book was that it was written pre-9/11 and lacks the relevence of today's battles. I'm sure that during his time in Afghanistan he was given more than enough opportunities to demonstrate leadership in today's counterinsurgency context, and according to Greg, he excelled. But anyway, this is not a review of Kolenda's book. So I will finish by merely saying that I really liked this book. I'm happy that CAI's plans and efforts are fruitful and I wish them nothing but the best in the years to follow. I truly believe that it is their efforts that will empower the people of those war-torn and poverty-striken areas to rise above their misery and make a better life for themselves and generations to follow. I hope that it will also bring about a lasting peace, something that bombs and bullets won't do. new words: sobriquet, interregnum

  11. 4 out of 5

    Michelle

    Amazing read especially when you think that the only news coming out of Pakistan and Afghanistan is bad. Would some body please nominate Greg Mortenson for a Nobel Peace Prize. He and hisDozen" have done more for world peace, interfaith understanding, and girls' education in 15 years than "Dirty anyone--even he--would have ever dreamed possible. He has coordinated the building of over 100 schools, where thousands of children, mostly girls are receiving a moderate, secular education. Books not bo Amazing read especially when you think that the only news coming out of Pakistan and Afghanistan is bad. Would some body please nominate Greg Mortenson for a Nobel Peace Prize. He and hisDozen" have done more for world peace, interfaith understanding, and girls' education in 15 years than "Dirty anyone--even he--would have ever dreamed possible. He has coordinated the building of over 100 schools, where thousands of children, mostly girls are receiving a moderate, secular education. Books not bombs are going to win peace in Central Asia. The narative of his Afghan Adventure starts off like a scene from Lawrence of Arabia when a group of "Kirghiz horsemen from Afghanistan’s Wakhan Corridor rode into Pakistan and secured a promise from Mortenson to construct a school in an isolated pocket of the Pamir Mountains known as Bozai Gumbad," which the Afghans' call the "Rooftop of the World." Bozai Gumbad is the last place that anyone, including the Afghan goverment, think to put a school and that is exactly what drives Mortenson, who has a "the last best place" sticker on his beat-up CAI briefcase. "Those words affirm my belief that the people who in the last places--the people who are most neglected and least valued by the larger world--often represent the best of who we are and the finest standard of what we are meant to become. This is the power that last places hold over me, and why I have found it impossible to resist their pull." His work with the communities is so respected and successful the US Military has started to work with him and his first book, Three Cups of Tea is on the mandatory reading list for all Counterinsurgency forces in Central Asia. Mortenson credits the military wives for the reading list recommendation. The military community is also one of the CAI's biggest finacial supporters--elementary schools that serve military bases have collected more Pennies for Peace (P4P) than other elementary schools. Chapter 11 has this H.G. Wells quote on the page, "History is a race between education and catastprophe." Mortenson is winning the race with the stones he turns into schools.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Briynne

    I ran to the library to get this pretty much the moment I finished Three Cups of Tea, and I found it to be a enjoyable continuation of the story. Most of my thoughts on this are already mirrored in my review of the first book, so I won’t repeat myself. The only real qualm I had was that the first 100 pages of this were a lot like a paraphrase of the last 100 pages of Three Cups of Tea, where the author tries to lay the groundwork for how his charity attempted to make headway into Afghanistan. On I ran to the library to get this pretty much the moment I finished Three Cups of Tea, and I found it to be a enjoyable continuation of the story. Most of my thoughts on this are already mirrored in my review of the first book, so I won’t repeat myself. The only real qualm I had was that the first 100 pages of this were a lot like a paraphrase of the last 100 pages of Three Cups of Tea, where the author tries to lay the groundwork for how his charity attempted to make headway into Afghanistan. One thing I liked about this book was that it was less prone to glossing over negatives than the first book. Maybe that has to do with the fact that the co-author for Three Cups of Tea, didn’t collaborate on this one, and I’m hearing more of Mortenson’s voice? Either way, I enjoyed his occasional bluntness; it was very relatable. On a separate note, I had a chance to Google this NGO when I was roughly in the middle of Stones into Schools, and saw all the to-do from a couple years ago stemming from a 60 Minutes exposé. Here’s my thoughts: is Mortenson a self-aggrandizing jerk who is only working for celebrity? No. Is he living it up stateside like one of those super-sleezy televangelists who are supposedly do-gooders but are actually robbing from the offering plate? No. Is it possible that he’s not much of a book-keeper but was possibly too busy trying to save the world to itemize receipts? Yup. Was he personally responsible for coordinating the building of over 100 schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan that welcome girls in areas where they are desperately needed? Definitely. Ok - so who really cares if he maybe made the story a little more interesting for the sake of creating a book that would captivate the hearts, minds, and pocketbooks of people in the interest of building more said schools? Not me. Go for it, Greg. Job well done.

  13. 5 out of 5

    Marisa

    Oh my gosh... Stunning. Those are four words that sum up my feelings about this incredible book... basically. The ending is dramatic and sad, while simultaneously showing us that even while it seems that everything that could possibly go bad in Afghanistan is, there are also those who are trying to defy it. Those who are trying to help others, and those who are trying to offer education, health, and necessities to people who deserve it. I finished this book upstairs, while downstairs my parents Oh my gosh... Stunning. Those are four words that sum up my feelings about this incredible book... basically. The ending is dramatic and sad, while simultaneously showing us that even while it seems that everything that could possibly go bad in Afghanistan is, there are also those who are trying to defy it. Those who are trying to help others, and those who are trying to offer education, health, and necessities to people who deserve it. I finished this book upstairs, while downstairs my parents watched Kite Runner (the only story where I can say with reasonable confidence that the movie was better than the book) which was yet another horrifying story based on terrifying truths of racism and non-acceptance. Even more so than with Mortenson's first book, I was revolted by what the kids at school- myself included -complain about. The fact that there are kids in Central Asia who want so badly to go to school and then don't get the chance to even learn how to read or add because their whole world is war-torn and covered with land mines that end their lives before they have even gotten the opportunity to live. And here we are complaining because everyday we are served home-made whole-wheat pizza at lunch and some of us get it at free or reduced prices, or that we have to much homework, not even noticing that without school we wouldn't be able to read text messages or change our Facebook statuses. It is really sad. It was Mortenson's work that made me realize the importance of education. So, I guess in the end, the underlying feeling I have is gratitude. For both school as well as Greg Mortenson's and the CAI's work.

  14. 5 out of 5

    Chuck

    This book, which picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off, is different and better than Mortenson's first book about his quest to build schools for small villages in Pakistan and Afghanistan. To begin with, there is no ghost writer. This is a first person account. So unlike the last book, it is more personal, and the reader gets more insight into the passion about school building that has consumed Mortenson. Some of the stories he tells are quite touching. On the road to a distant mountain vill This book, which picks up where Three Cups of Tea left off, is different and better than Mortenson's first book about his quest to build schools for small villages in Pakistan and Afghanistan. To begin with, there is no ghost writer. This is a first person account. So unlike the last book, it is more personal, and the reader gets more insight into the passion about school building that has consumed Mortenson. Some of the stories he tells are quite touching. On the road to a distant mountain village, Mortenson meets an orphaned eleven-year-old mechanic who works for food and shelter. He also tells the tale of a young boy who is blown up by an old Soviet land mine while he watches the school he wants to attend being built. What is also missing is a lot of the biographical details that appear in the first book. Thus, the book reads more like an adventure story than a memoir. We really see how Mortenson and his staff sacrifice to promote peace and literacy in a very violent and dangerous part of the world. We see their struggles to reach remote villages and see the harsh lives of people he tries to help. This book contains a lot of historical, geographical, and cultural information about this mysterious part of the world. Mortenson really tries to educate the reader about the world he works with every day. And of course, the primary focus of this book is the message. If we really want to defeat the Taliban and Islamic extremism and promote health and literacy, then building schools in remote villages is a great first step. Mortenson proves his thesis again and again and inspires us to do something about it.

  15. 5 out of 5

    Shireen McQuade

    Absolutely excellent! I couldn't put this book down. Dr. Greg's initial plan to build schools to serve female students in remote villages evolves with the situations he encounters, so that he expands into Taliban strongholds and in the outskirts of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul. He is not a micro manager, and instead uses his gift of perception to hire the smartest, hardest working Afghanis from rural areas with humble backgrounds. He trusts and relies on them to implement his dream of universal Absolutely excellent! I couldn't put this book down. Dr. Greg's initial plan to build schools to serve female students in remote villages evolves with the situations he encounters, so that he expands into Taliban strongholds and in the outskirts of Afghanistan's capital, Kabul. He is not a micro manager, and instead uses his gift of perception to hire the smartest, hardest working Afghanis from rural areas with humble backgrounds. He trusts and relies on them to implement his dream of universal female education, and is wise enough to allow his motley crew the latitude to devise creative ways to increase female literacy manyfold. For example, one of his latest recruits decided that a women's center would allow older women an opportunity to gain literacy, but the centers proved exceeding popular, filling to capacity with women interested in learning foreign languages, computer skills, and how to operate cell phones, among many other things. Mortenson begins to develop excellent relations with the top U.S military leaders and we learn that it is Mortenson's belief that the military has the greatest understanding of the importance of education in Afghanistan to combat extremist forces such as Al Qaida and the Taliban. With the fame of his first book, we learn from this book that Mortenson spends more time in the U.S. accepting invitations to speak about his experiences, and these appearances invariably raise a lot of money for his educational projects. However, he is able to rely on his trusted Dirty Dozen crew to carry on the construction of more schools in Afghanistan and Pakistan, speaking to his crew every morning at 5 am by satellite phone.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Daniel Clausen

    Romantic. Sentimental. And thoroughly absorbing. The "aw shucks" manner in which Mortensen presents himself, as a dirt bag mountaineer who stumbles into charity work, is one that may stretch your credulity. Any person who can attempt to climb K-2, build schools in faraway places, and learn the nuances of a foreign culture is certainly a man to be reckoned with. Yet, this sense of humility is also a very essential part of the book. The book is romantic, sentimental, full of adventure -- in the en Romantic. Sentimental. And thoroughly absorbing. The "aw shucks" manner in which Mortensen presents himself, as a dirt bag mountaineer who stumbles into charity work, is one that may stretch your credulity. Any person who can attempt to climb K-2, build schools in faraway places, and learn the nuances of a foreign culture is certainly a man to be reckoned with. Yet, this sense of humility is also a very essential part of the book. The book is romantic, sentimental, full of adventure -- in the end though it has to be grounded in realistic hopes and dreams, and yes, even humility. The book is an excellent story. It's a page turner full of adventure and interesting characters. The book, of course, is also more than that. It's a sales pitch for the work of the Central Asia Institute. It's also a argument for the importance of girls' education: its ability to raise the livelihoods for individual women, improve the welfare of societies, and perhaps even fight extremism. "The last best place" is more than a slogan. It's where you will find the beginning of a wonderful adventure.

  17. 4 out of 5

    Rose

    I hesitated getting this book because I thought it might be, like a lot of sequels, just a rehash of "Three Cups of Tea". Well, it emphatically is not! It reads like a good novel. It's engaging, thought provoking and very informative. The author gives the reader a full sense of the isolation, beauty and destruction that exists in the remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. He also gives a full sense of the people who populate those devastated areas. It is hard to imagine the everyday hardships I hesitated getting this book because I thought it might be, like a lot of sequels, just a rehash of "Three Cups of Tea". Well, it emphatically is not! It reads like a good novel. It's engaging, thought provoking and very informative. The author gives the reader a full sense of the isolation, beauty and destruction that exists in the remote areas of Pakistan and Afghanistan. He also gives a full sense of the people who populate those devastated areas. It is hard to imagine the everyday hardships they endure just to survive from day-to-day. In a country where our children look for excuses to stay out of school, it is really inspiring to see the lengths to which the communities will go to obtain education for their children. In a world where there are many places where women are still treated as the lowliest possessions, it is refreshing to know that in these places an emphasis is being placed on educating girls. It is a small step in the right direction. The conflict in Afghanistan and even in Iraq no longer seems insolvable if the military follows Greg Mortensen's lead in engaging the assistance of local leaders and using the time-honored methods for solving disputes.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Heidideifel

    I'd like to give this book 3 stars but I guess I can't really recommend it. If you want to know what has happened since his last book, then read this. But I wouldn't read it without reading and loving the first book. It's probably my unfamiliarity with Central Asian culture, names, and geography, but I had a hard time following who was who, where he was, how the places connected. And this was despite the fact that he included maps and a glossary. If I had really been into it, I would have looked I'd like to give this book 3 stars but I guess I can't really recommend it. If you want to know what has happened since his last book, then read this. But I wouldn't read it without reading and loving the first book. It's probably my unfamiliarity with Central Asian culture, names, and geography, but I had a hard time following who was who, where he was, how the places connected. And this was despite the fact that he included maps and a glossary. If I had really been into it, I would have looked on the map each time a place was mentioned but I was too lazy to do that. That said, I think his story is important to be told and inspirational. He makes me want to sacrifice more for others, invest more in the poor and illiterate. We will probably make another donation to his institute because they do really great stuff in school-building and relationship-building. But he's not the best writer. Lots of sentences were super long and clunky and often it was unclear if the verb in the sentence was applying to a later clause or if the clause was just modifying the noun preceding it. So, 2 stars to the book. 5 stars to him and his NGO.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Laurie

    I read his first book, Three Cups of Tea, when it first came out. Since my husband may potentially be deployed to that area someday, I was more than a little interested in his viewpoints. This book continues where "Tea" left off and talks about creating schools in Afghanistan. As an almost sidenote, the institute he founded to do this has expanded into empowering women specifically in these countries. After reading these two books I am more convinced than ever that his approach will create a str I read his first book, Three Cups of Tea, when it first came out. Since my husband may potentially be deployed to that area someday, I was more than a little interested in his viewpoints. This book continues where "Tea" left off and talks about creating schools in Afghanistan. As an almost sidenote, the institute he founded to do this has expanded into empowering women specifically in these countries. After reading these two books I am more convinced than ever that his approach will create a stronger, better and longer lasting peace in impoverished countries than almost anything else we can do. At the end of the book he backs up his anecdotal evidence with research data that confirms that educating and empowering women and children is the key to improving a nation. It is interesting to note that without using a heavy hand, you clearly understand that the men are generally NOT the key agent to positive change in that area of the world.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Waltjohnson305 Johnson

    The author gives a lot of very good information about Pakistan and includes historical background. He tells a compelling story that is every bit as good as an action novel. The model of giving to another country is one that many more people should emulate. Find local people who share your vision, empower them to do the work and provide the funding, stucture and oversight that makes it work. It is a very good continuation of 3 cups of Tea. Inspires one to new ways of looking at life. Confirms my The author gives a lot of very good information about Pakistan and includes historical background. He tells a compelling story that is every bit as good as an action novel. The model of giving to another country is one that many more people should emulate. Find local people who share your vision, empower them to do the work and provide the funding, stucture and oversight that makes it work. It is a very good continuation of 3 cups of Tea. Inspires one to new ways of looking at life. Confirms my own experience in Nicaragua and Mexico that you learn more from your interaction with people in another culture than you can imagine, especially in areas less developed economically.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Randy

    I know that I don't speak from a military perspective when I say this but I don't believe civilians should be considered "collateral damage". Innovators in the American military are reading Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools to understand how to work with village elders and religious leaders to educate the children there especially the girls. That's all I've got to say, except that this is very worth reading if we are to see changes away from religious extremism in places like Pakistan and I know that I don't speak from a military perspective when I say this but I don't believe civilians should be considered "collateral damage". Innovators in the American military are reading Three Cups of Tea and Stones into Schools to understand how to work with village elders and religious leaders to educate the children there especially the girls. That's all I've got to say, except that this is very worth reading if we are to see changes away from religious extremism in places like Pakistan and Afganistan. Of course, we could nuke Saudi Arabia, who funds 90% of the extremist muslim schools in the world.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Kristin

    I think I may actually like this book better than 3 Cups of Tea. 1) There is an index AND a glossary, and more photos and maps 2) The geography is more familiar to me than it was in the first book 3) The events detailed are more current (and therefore fresh in my memory) -- perhaps I was paying more attention to the events because I had read 3 Cups of Tea. Glad there are people like Greg Mortensen who are willing to do the hard things. Glad my daughter can be a smartie-pants and dream of becoming wh I think I may actually like this book better than 3 Cups of Tea. 1) There is an index AND a glossary, and more photos and maps 2) The geography is more familiar to me than it was in the first book 3) The events detailed are more current (and therefore fresh in my memory) -- perhaps I was paying more attention to the events because I had read 3 Cups of Tea. Glad there are people like Greg Mortensen who are willing to do the hard things. Glad my daughter can be a smartie-pants and dream of becoming whatever she wants. Glad I have the blessings that come with being a middle-class American.

  23. 4 out of 5

    Mikey B.

    This book gives us a very real feel for life in Afghanistan and Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier province. After reading we have clear pictures of the enormous obstacles the inhabitants in these two very impoverished areas face on a day to day basis. I am glad that this is being read by so many people including those in the U.S. military. The book sketches a life that is so very different from that which we in North America and Europe experience. The land is remote and mountainous and lacks a transp This book gives us a very real feel for life in Afghanistan and Pakistan’s Northwest Frontier province. After reading we have clear pictures of the enormous obstacles the inhabitants in these two very impoverished areas face on a day to day basis. I am glad that this is being read by so many people including those in the U.S. military. The book sketches a life that is so very different from that which we in North America and Europe experience. The land is remote and mountainous and lacks a transportation infrastructure. The people are struggling daily to do ‘normal activities’ like obtaining water. Adequate shelter is often absent in this unforgiving environment. And what is so desperately missing and is the author’s goal - education for children. Afghanistan has been war-torn for over thirty years and is plagued by religious extremism. The team of Mr. Mortenson has valiantly been setting up schools in remote outposts. What is most impressive is that he is using people native to these areas to accomplish this. This program is largely supported monetarily by the U.S., but it is not an American directed program. Greg Mortenson’s highly motivated team figures the logistics, builds the schools literally using the stones from the local village and then teachers are hired from the local area. All the schools must have girls in attendance. His team is a wide assortment – one was a former member of the Taliban who became “deprogrammed” from witnessing the brutal treatment of women. Mr. Mortensen is very adept at choosing his dedicated personnel. In a sense he has become a victim of his own success; he now spends more time in the U.S. promoting his books and giving presentations – all of which involve fund-raising – than in Pakistan and Afghanistan. He acknowledges that this is the way it should be – his movement is becoming more and more “home-grown”. The schools are being constructed with the full input of the local communities and are a local accomplishment. I am somewhat dubious about enlisting the U.S. or NATO military forces in Afghanistan to promote schools. While some of the officers genuinely wish to promote education there are also other events like Abu Ghraib that point in the opposite direction as to cooperation between foreign military and the inhabitants of the country. From watching the documentary “Restrepo” I did not get a sense of U.S. soldiers empathetic to the residents of Afghanistan. But I do see this in shades of grey and am not in total opposition to a foreign military presence. When schools are bombed and young girls who attend school have acid thrown in their faces by religious extremists – a military response is required. This book is very readable and aside from being an inspiring story of building schools it is a marvellous travelogue in a dangerous land. It is wonderful and gratifying that Mr. Mortenson is offering more than a military response. What started as his individual effort is now blossoming and expanding. Building schools and providing education is the backbone of a civil society. As Mr. Mortenson points out, it is much cheaper to build schools than making weapons of war. The long term effects of education are far more positive and enduring. Let us hope he continues to be successful. I am in awe of Greg Mortenson and his team’s motivation. All power to them and their grass roots educational campaign. Please see the following commentaries, this review was written prior to the Greg Mortensen controversy

  24. 4 out of 5

    Leeanna

    Stones into Schools, by Greg Mortenson I read "Stones into Schools" immediately after finishing "Three Cups of Tea," and while I enjoyed both books, I definitely liked "Stones into Schools" more. While "Three Cups of Tea" was more about Mortenson's life and how he found his life's work building schools in remote villages in Pakistan and Afghanistan, "Stones into Schools" is bigger than Mortenson, and really shows how his work has taken on a life of its own. "Stones into Schools" is also told from Stones into Schools, by Greg Mortenson I read "Stones into Schools" immediately after finishing "Three Cups of Tea," and while I enjoyed both books, I definitely liked "Stones into Schools" more. While "Three Cups of Tea" was more about Mortenson's life and how he found his life's work building schools in remote villages in Pakistan and Afghanistan, "Stones into Schools" is bigger than Mortenson, and really shows how his work has taken on a life of its own. "Stones into Schools" is also told from the first person point of view, which I preferred, because I was able to really get into Mortenson's head and get a personal feel for everything described ("Three Cups of Tea" was written in third person POV). Okay, enough comparison. "Stones into Schools" is both a fun, informative, yet very touching book. I went through a lot of emotions while reading, from happiness to sadness, as Mortenson described his team (nicknamed the Dirty Dozen) and the difficulty in setting up a school in one of the most remote areas of the world, the Wakhan corridor. There's everything in between as well, particularly short accounts of children helped by the schools. The writing flows very well; I was hooked immediately and couldn't put the book down. I actually finished the book by flashlight, when my power went out for the weekend. At times there are huge amounts of information to digest, but the information really helped me understand the different politics and dynamics of the regions. The struggle to set up a school in the Wakhan is the main thread of the book, but along the way there are many detours. "Stones into Schools" is both awe-inspiring and inspirational, and I learned an incredible amount about the politics, geography, and people of Pakistan and Afghanistan, and how something as simple as a school can affect the lives of hundreds of people. There is a saying, "When you educate a girl, you educate a community," and that is what Mortenson and his institute live by. Something that really hit me is that in "Three Cups of Tea," bringing education to rural areas was Mortenson's personal journey, but in "Stones into Schools," his mission has become larger than him, as new schools are planned, relationships are created, and things happen without him. 4/5.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Carol Moore

    Stones Into Schools begins in 1999 with 14 men armed with AK-47s galloping their short legged, shaggy horses across the Irshad Pass to Pakistan. Their instructions were to find Greg Mortensen and petition him to build a school for the children in their remote mountainous region in Afghanistan. Greg’s host provided a feast for these guests. They were not expected to remove their boots at the entrance to his home. The lower air pressure in this town would cause their feet to swell so much that the Stones Into Schools begins in 1999 with 14 men armed with AK-47s galloping their short legged, shaggy horses across the Irshad Pass to Pakistan. Their instructions were to find Greg Mortensen and petition him to build a school for the children in their remote mountainous region in Afghanistan. Greg’s host provided a feast for these guests. They were not expected to remove their boots at the entrance to his home. The lower air pressure in this town would cause their feet to swell so much that they would be unable to get their boots back on and ride back home. The Pass is open only for a short time every year before snow buries it. The book concludes with the completion of the school—ten years later. Its completion depended on the physical labor and cooperation of all the people in that impoverished area. Mortenson saw their triumph as a path to peace for all. "They had raised a beacon of hope that called out not only to the Kirghiz themselves, but also to every village and town in Afghanistan where children yearn for education, and where fathers and mothers dream of building a school whose doors will open not only to their sons but also to their daughters, including -- and perhaps especially -- those places that are surrounded by a ring of men with Kalashnikovs who help to sustain the grotesque lie that flinging battery acid into the face of a girl who longs to study arithmetic is somehow in keeping with the teachings of the Koran." Mortenson’s vision of promoting peace through education and literacy becomes a reality only with cultural “adventures” and physical challenges so trying that Job himself would be daunted. Needless to say, this makes for fascinating, compelling stories. Nothing is easy or safe there; getting things done is very complicated.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Patti

    If anyone thinks that because they read "Three Cups of Tea" that they know the story of this book, think again. It is truly an amazing tale of the tenacity of a group of men who are determined to reach the goal no matter what. Anyone who can read the Epilogue without tearing up must have a heart of "stones". I won't spoil the story of whether the tears are ones of joy or sadness. Any news report I now hear about Afghanistan will now be tempered with the knowledge of the country and its people tha If anyone thinks that because they read "Three Cups of Tea" that they know the story of this book, think again. It is truly an amazing tale of the tenacity of a group of men who are determined to reach the goal no matter what. Anyone who can read the Epilogue without tearing up must have a heart of "stones". I won't spoil the story of whether the tears are ones of joy or sadness. Any news report I now hear about Afghanistan will now be tempered with the knowledge of the country and its people that I have learned from this book. I had heard of Greg's input to the military and it was fascinating to read how that came about. Speaking of the military: "Eventually, I came to understand that a group of people who wield enormous power happen, oddly enough, to espouse some of the very same ideals imparted to me by people in Africa and central Asia who have no power at all. The reason for this , in my view, is that members of the armed forces have worked on the ground - in many cases, during three or four tours of duty-- on a level that very few diplomats, academicians, journalists, or policy makers can match. And among other things, this experience has imbued soldiers with the gift of empathy." This project continues to be a work in progress, and I am in awe of all those who have worked so hard to accomplish so much up to now. I do have a correction, Greg, about one of the picture labels just in case you haven't caught it for the new editions. It seems to be that the horse standing with Sarfraz Khan is either named wrong or isn't Kazil, since Kazil seems to be very much alive at the end of the book. Thanks

  27. 4 out of 5

    Marsha

    Just finished this book today. Tears streamed down my face as I finished and i was bummed to think it will be years before I know more about the school building that CAI is doing. Greg Mortenson's storytelling is wonderful. I wonder if drinking all those cups of tea over the almost 20 years accounts for his ability to tell a tale. I've learned so much about the history, culture and customs of this remote part of the world. It is inspiring. While I don't believe I"m called to go there, I do see th Just finished this book today. Tears streamed down my face as I finished and i was bummed to think it will be years before I know more about the school building that CAI is doing. Greg Mortenson's storytelling is wonderful. I wonder if drinking all those cups of tea over the almost 20 years accounts for his ability to tell a tale. I've learned so much about the history, culture and customs of this remote part of the world. It is inspiring. While I don't believe I"m called to go there, I do see the part I can play in this effort. I know Mortenson would rather be in the field, but the money that can be raised in this country is vital to the field's success. I told my mom about this book on the way to church this morning. I want her to read it...although she says she's not much for political books at age 88. I think it would be fantastic book for their reading club at the home where she lives. And I'm thrilled to know that they've made the book into a youth version, so that kids who can't read this whole book right now can still take part in the adventure. ------------------------------------- I'm up to page 92. The work in Afghanistan is just beginning. What I've appreciated is the peek inside the customs and traditions of this part of the world. I know I'm not tough enough to live there and I'm amazed at the vision for change that is embraced by the "commandhans". They are brave enough to see what their people need and commit to figuring out how to get it for them.

  28. 5 out of 5

    Bruce

    While this book is arguably a continuation of Mortenson's "Three Cups of Tea," it is extremely important reading for those who desire real peace. Like "Three Cups of Tea" it should be required reading for Special Forces troops being assigned to Afghanistan. In fact, it should be required reading for all of the military and all of Congress. Of special note, if you are not going to take the time to read the whole book, at least read page 81 and pages 135 to 138. In this book Mortenson continues to While this book is arguably a continuation of Mortenson's "Three Cups of Tea," it is extremely important reading for those who desire real peace. Like "Three Cups of Tea" it should be required reading for Special Forces troops being assigned to Afghanistan. In fact, it should be required reading for all of the military and all of Congress. Of special note, if you are not going to take the time to read the whole book, at least read page 81 and pages 135 to 138. In this book Mortenson continues to show that the education of girls is extremely important to the area and that many in the area want their daughters educated. What often prevents the furtherance of female education are attitudes ingrained in tribal societies - what I consider the selling of young girls for a bride price; a family's desire to have a daughter-in-law as a slave for a number of years; and, perhaps most subtle is the jealousy and envy by male family members. "Stones into Schools" shows that some of these attitudes can be overcome. It also shows that the conventional military attitude of taking and holding land is a no-win strategy. As when the Special Forces first went into Vietnam, working through village elders and religious people, finding out what they really need and want, and requiring them to put sweat equity and other resources into bettering themselves does more to win hearts and minds than guns and threats.

  29. 5 out of 5

    Meredith

    Educators, politicians, and military personnel in the US need to read this book. While some of the overly detailed passages were a bit tiresome to read (I think the book could have been edited a bit better), the overall message is powerful. Education is the key to the future. Education is helping to rebuild war-torn countries and regions, and rebuild international relations and trust, especially with the US. I agree with Mortenson's opinions on bilingualism, and that there should be a move in US Educators, politicians, and military personnel in the US need to read this book. While some of the overly detailed passages were a bit tiresome to read (I think the book could have been edited a bit better), the overall message is powerful. Education is the key to the future. Education is helping to rebuild war-torn countries and regions, and rebuild international relations and trust, especially with the US. I agree with Mortenson's opinions on bilingualism, and that there should be a move in US schools to foster bilingualism. While this is not a central theme in his work in Afghanistan/Pakistan, the results of the CAI schools show the positive outcomes. I don't see how anyone could read this book and NOT be moved to make a difference in the world, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant.

  30. 4 out of 5

    Wsm

    Who could ever forget the killer earthquake in Pakistan in 2005 ? That was destruction on an unprecedented scale.This book is not easy to read as it goes into the details of what happened on that unfortunate day,how the earth shook with a roar and everyone thought that qayamat (the end of the world) had arrived.It is difficult to read because of the account of the sufferings of the victims.Among those stepping in for humanitarian work was Greg Mortensen (of Three Cups of Tea fame).It is debatabl Who could ever forget the killer earthquake in Pakistan in 2005 ? That was destruction on an unprecedented scale.This book is not easy to read as it goes into the details of what happened on that unfortunate day,how the earth shook with a roar and everyone thought that qayamat (the end of the world) had arrived.It is difficult to read because of the account of the sufferings of the victims.Among those stepping in for humanitarian work was Greg Mortensen (of Three Cups of Tea fame).It is debatable how much good work he actually did,following allegations of fabrications in his previous book.I sure hope he helped out,as the victims of this earthquake needed all the help they could get. (Three Stars)

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