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Three Cups of Tea: One Man's Mission to Promote Peace . . . One School at a Time [Kindle Edition]

Greg Mortenson , David Oliver Relin
4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2,892 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $17.00
Kindle Price: $10.34
You Save: $6.66 (39%)
Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC

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Book Description


The astonishing, uplifting story of a real-life Indiana Jones and his humanitarian campaign to use education to combat terrorism in the Taliban’s backyard

Anyone who despairs of the individual’s power to change lives has to read the story of Greg Mortenson, a homeless mountaineer who, following a 1993 climb of Pakistan’s treacherous K2, was inspired by a chance encounter with impoverished mountain villagers and promised to build them a school. Over the next decade he built fifty-five schools—especially for girls—that offer a balanced education in one of the most isolated and dangerous regions on earth. As it chronicles Mortenson’s quest, which has brought him into conflict with both enraged Islamists and uncomprehending Americans, Three Cups of Tea combines adventure with a celebration of the humanitarian spirit.



Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

From Viking: "Greg Mortenson’s work as a humanitarian in Afghanistan and Pakistan has provided tens of thousands of children with an education. 60 Minutes is a serious news organization and in the wake of their report, Viking plans to carefully review the materials with the author."

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Some failures lead to phenomenal successes, and this American nurse's unsuccessful attempt to climb K2, the world's second tallest mountain, is one of them. Dangerously ill when he finished his climb in 1993, Mortenson was sheltered for seven weeks by the small Pakistani village of Korphe; in return, he promised to build the impoverished town's first school, a project that grew into the Central Asia Institute, which has since constructed more than 50 schools across rural Pakistan and Afghanistan. Coauthor Relin recounts Mortenson's efforts in fascinating detail, presenting compelling portraits of the village elders, con artists, philanthropists, mujahideen, Taliban officials, ambitious school girls and upright Muslims Mortenson met along the way. As the book moves into the post-9/11 world, Mortenson and Relin argue that the United States must fight Islamic extremism in the region through collaborative efforts to alleviate poverty and improve access to education, especially for girls. Captivating and suspenseful, with engrossing accounts of both hostilities and unlikely friendships, this book will win many readers' hearts. (Mar.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

Product Details

  • File Size: 1890 KB
  • Print Length: 376 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (March 2, 2006)
  • Sold by: Penguin Group (USA) LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B000OT8GTO
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #69,932 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
493 of 532 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars It doesn't add up, and now (sadly) there's proof April 18, 2011
Format:Paperback
I read this book just a few weeks before the scandal broke. I loved the story and am glad to see children being educated. And yet some things just didn't add up....

International development is a challenge, and there is a long history of failure. The main problem is, how do you translate donor money into resources that get to the right people at the right time in the right form? It always seems like 90% is either wasted directly (mismanagement, bribes, etc.), or gets siphoned off to pay for things that aren't used or not wanted. A lot of this is political: local leaders resist being upstaged and have their own priorities and face-saving motives, while the philanthropists insist upon doing it "our way" because "we know what's best".

Three Cups of Tea makes it sound like Greg Mortenson has single-handedly solved these problems. Hence the questions that arose when I read the book. Could it really be that a village would be completely unanimous in support of new school, and with such universal, thumping excitement? There weren't any political toes being stepped on? Was there really no suspiciousness or even apathy among the villagers? Would a villager really approach Mortenson to have a broken bone set (Mortenson is a nurse), when this sort of 'technology-free medicine' is exactly the sort of thing, like midwifery, that less developed cultures maintain quite a good grasp of? Given how hard it is to get a doctor to work in rural but accessible areas in N. America, how could teachers be recruited to work in these new schools in tiny villages, which take days to get to and where the local language is different? How could he know the schools were being built in the right place?
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76 of 83 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars A tall tale to rival Pecos Bill April 29, 2011
Format:Paperback
I picked this book up at a 3 for 2 sale ages ago and it had been getting buried deeper and deeper in my to be read stack ever since. When I heard about the controversy surrounding the book, I decided it was time to pry it out and dust it off.

Although I did not see the "Sixty Minutes" episode, I did read Krakauer's "Three Cups of Deceit". But then it occurred to me that I don't know any more about Krakauer than I do about Mortenson, and nor do I have any more reason to trust him. So I also read Mortenson's statement along with various material from his supporters, and I tried very hard to read the book with an open mind. Even with this effort, however, I have to say, no offense, but people actually believed this to begin with? I know I'm working with the benefit of hindsight and all, but the book is so fantastical I can't believe anyone ever swallowed it whole without gagging. We may never know how much, if any, of what David Oliver Relin tells us about Greg Mortenson is true, but if even half of it is, we all need to throw ourselves on our faces and repent - Greg Mortenson is the Second Coming of Christ.

This book is myth-making in the finest tradition. Greg Mortenson is a hero of epic proportions. He's the most competent Army medic and trauma nurse. He's a skilled climber who selflessly spends 96 hours shuttling supplies up a mountain so that others can rest before attempting the summit and then, with only two hours' rest, he spends another 72 hours rescuing a severely ill climbing companion, and it is only with Mortenson's knowledge and skill that the man survives.
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115 of 130 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Greg is a con artiste? April 18, 2011
Format:Paperback
This book has been revealed to have invented stories, including the first story about K2. 60 minutes recently had a damning expose that Greg's stories are fabricated and his charity is used to enrich himself. Google 'Three cups of tea 60 minutes' to see the episode. As someone who works in Afghanistan and puts his butt on the line there, I find this reprehensible. The publisher needs to issue refunds to people who bought this book.
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448 of 534 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars An inspiring story, told poorly November 18, 2007
Format:Paperback
Greg Mortenson's story of a failed attempt at summiting K2 and a later success at transforming and impacting the lives of thousands of Pakistani children through the construction of schools is inspiring, touching and heroic. On the basis of the story alone, I would give it 5 stars. It is unfortunate, therefore, that it is told so poorly by David Relin, whose writing was so problematic that I can only give the book 3.

Moretnson's trials, obstacles and his perseverence in overcoming these challenges to realize his dream of building (initally only one, later 23) schools in the remote regions of Pakistan is magnificent; a man of lesser toughness, integrity, temperment and stuborness certainly would have given up in the face of so many setbacks: financial as he sought to raise monies, personal as his quest took a toll on his personal life, and political, as Pakistanis, mujahadeen, and later, Americans sought to distract or derail his noble work. If you can get past the pained and sometimes overdone writing, these are the gems of the story. It seems many can overlook this shortcoming given the power of Mortenson's deeds. I could not.

Sadly, it took a lot of effort for me to look past the sophmoric writing, which I found to be a distraction from enjoying the larger plot. As other reviewers have noted, describing Mortenson in the third person ("Mortenson settled back into the passenger seat, a place of honor ...") seems odd when reading non-fiction. I can forgive this; it was the style of the prose that set my teeth on edge. Referring to the mountainous terrain as "celestial rocks", "great brown crenulated walls" and how the "Karkoram knifed relentlessly into the a defensless blue sky" demoted the very real contributions Mortenson was making by writing in a pulp-fiction style.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
3.0 out of 5 stars Three Stars
Too bad it's (reportedly) a work of fiction and fraud!
Published 1 day ago by David M. Klotz
4.0 out of 5 stars AP World History Review: a description of my opinion of the book
The book Three Cups of Tea is a good read. It tells the story of a person by the name of Greg Mortenson who goes to Pakistan to climb K2 and ends up building schools for the people... Read more
Published 2 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars An excellent read.
I really enjoyed reading this book and was amazed at the ruggedness of the people who lived in that area. Read more
Published 3 days ago by 101Eagle
4.0 out of 5 stars I would recommend this book to anyone who is interested in...
In my opinion, Three Cups of Tea is an exciting novel that provides a unique and accurate commentary on education systems in the modern-day Middle East. Read more
Published 3 days ago by Grace U.
4.0 out of 5 stars A good read at the time
Sweet story and well written. Too bad people now disparage the author. I gave it away at the time I finished it and that person also appreciated it.
Published 10 days ago by Satipatipatti
5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars
I loved it until I discovered it was a farce: fiction portrayed as truth.
Published 12 days ago by Bernice B. Johnson
5.0 out of 5 stars I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have
As someone who has worked many years in Asia with people of limited resources, I found this story to be very inspirational! I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I have.
Published 13 days ago by Donald Weidemann
4.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational
This is an inspirational look at the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan and how one man reminds a nation that the portrayal of these countries by the American media is inaccurate,... Read more
Published 14 days ago by Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful to also experience other cultures and religions from his ...
An incredible story of a very humble man who just did (do) what he thought is right. Wonderful to also experience other cultures and religions from his perspective - totally... Read more
Published 28 days ago by Marius
3.0 out of 5 stars Even though it wasn’t written well it might be a good book to read if...
7th Grade Student

The storyline of the book was very interesting and enjoyable, however the book itself, in my opinion, is poorly written. Read more
Published 1 month ago by E
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Why are so many people interested in this book?!
I read this book about a year ago without knowing at all what it would be about. While the narration and storytelling is not enthralling, i was blown away by the story itself. It is a highly relevant book about a man who has utmost compassion and diligence for helping people and communities. ... Read More
Aug 18, 2009 by Muzz |  See all 30 posts
So terribly sad...
Oh, grow up. Greg Mortenson is a liar and a cheat.
Apr 21, 2011 by Book Maven |  See all 6 posts
$9.99 vs $7.95
Why Greg and others do not sell directly to the readers at 9.99? They would make a much bigger margin even if they sell less because of the lack of promotion of publishers. This fascinating! By having higher prices, the publishers may be slowing the ebook market to develop further (I started my... Read More
Jul 25, 2010 by A. Coutinho |  See all 3 posts
All a lie. He is a crook. Check out 60 min expose.
How often has 60 minutes reported half truths for sensationalism, this was quite a storythat gave the program a lot of attention. Were the so-called lies deliberate? What was the true agenda behind the "60 minute" program? We all make mistakes in judgement, hopefully not trying to... Read More
Apr 6, 2012 by haley smith |  See all 2 posts
David is dead.
Yet another casualty of Mortenson's lies.
Dec 10, 2012 by CirclesInTheSand |  See all 2 posts
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